You might be more focused on other sporting events this afternoon, but if you have a spare minute in between checking fantasy scores and throwing bad juju at Eli Manning, maybe flip over to NBA TV to check out your Philadelphia 76ers tip off the first chapter in what looks sure to be one of the most epic 15-win seasons in NBA history. The Sixers have traveled to Bilbao, Spain for their pre-season opener, and will be facing the Bilboa Basket squad at Noon EST.
Two Sixers who will not be making their pre-season debut today--in addition to first-round acquisition Nerlens Noel, who is of course out for the entire pre-season and much of the regular season while he recovers from his torn ACL--are Royce White, who did not make the trip over, and Lavoy Allen, whose lingering knee issues will keep him temporarily sidelined. We may, however, get to see our first glimpses of newest Sixer Gani Lawal, a power forward taken with the Suns' first-round pick four drafts ago, who was snatched up by Hinkie and co. after slithering out of his EuroLeague contract a couple days earlier.
Bilbao has former Jazz forward Raul Lopez, recent Heat Summer Leaguer Jackie Carmichael, and a whole bunch of dudes you've never heard of. They're a professional squad, of some sort though, and that might be more than you can say for the new look Sixers at this point in time. Expect a close one.
Tip-off coming momentarily on NBA TV. Evan, Thad, MCW, T-Wrote and Spence should all be there, so it'd be nice for you to at least take a moment to make an appearance and say hi.