Count Brett Brown among those thinking about the potential season-ending 36-game losing streak.
After Saturday’s 122-103 loss to the Washington Wizards, when asked if he’s spoken with the players about the possibility of losing out, Brown responded, “All the time and I tell them that.”
While losing out is mathematically possible—the Sixers won’t be favored in another game this season, per TeamRankings.com—the likelihood of that happening is infinitesimal.
Based on TeamRankings’ projections, the odds of the Sixers losing their final 22 games are just over 1.1 percent.
(See here for the math.)
Between tanking opponents and contenders resting their stars, the Sixers will have plenty of chances to end the streak. Their best shot, according to the projections, comes this Saturday at home against Utah, where they have a 39.2 percent chance of winning. Other potential wins include their April 14 home tilt against Boston (36.9 percent chance of winning), the March 29 home matchup against Detroit (34.1 percent) and the March 21 home game against New York (32.0 percent).
The schedule, however, isn’t doing the Sixers any favors. Road tilts against Indiana, Chicago, Oklahoma City, San Antonio, Houston, Toronto, Memphis and Miami are all likely losses (even with the Heat on cruise control). The Sixers will have less than a 10 percent chance of winning each of those games, per TeamRankings.com.
Overall, TeamRankings.com projects the Sixers to finish with a final record of 18.8-63.2 (in other words, 19-63). Even in the worst-case scenario (the so-called “Melt Down”), the squad scrapes out two more wins over the final 22 games to finish at 17-65.
Losing 14 straight and getting smoked three times in the same week by fellow bottom-feeders admittedly sucks, even if it’s the best thing for the team’s draft positioning. Still, despite what our eyes might otherwise be telling us, the Sixers may have a few more wins in them. It just might not feel like that at the moment.