By Marcus Hayes, The Philadelphia Inquirer
Philly Dilly, indeed.
The Flyers are 9-0-1 aback Brandon Graham stripped-sacked Tom Brady.
The Sixers took a 7-0 almanac into Sunday night’s bold aback the Philly Special became a boom template.
Both teams absent on Feb. 3. Both teams watched the Eagles exhausted the Patriots in Super Bowl LII on Feb. 4. They watched abrupt quarterback Nick Foles alarm for the “Philly Special,” a fourth-down comedy on which he bent a touchdown pass. They watched centermost Jason Kelce, dressed like a mad, behemothic jester and fueled by chargeless Bud Light (Dilly Dilly!), blab the Eagles’ adventure at the end of the achievement array four canicule afterwards on the accomplish of the Art Museum.
Both teams were aggressive to be the abutting champion, and they’ve played like it.
“I anticipate guys get a little jealous,” said Sixers bouncer Ben Simmons. “We’re blessed for them, but at the aforementioned time, we appetite that activity of acceptable a championship.”
The Eagles’ acceptable makes the Sixers and Flyers comedy harder?
“That plays a allotment in it,” Simmons insisted. “We apperceive what it takes, aloof seeing those guys comedy and accord aggregate they’ve got, every game. That absolutely plays a allotment of it.”
“Teams are rolling appropriate now. The Eagles did their part,” said Flyers defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere. “Seeing how abundant fun they had winning, and the parade, and all that, puts a little pep in our step. Hopefully, we can accumulate it going.”
Both teams accept been hot at the aforementioned time in the past, but in those instances both teams were accepted to be good.
The Sixers were aggravating for their eighth beeline win Sunday night in Washington. The aftermost time they won eight beeline was during a nine-game band Feb. 12-March 2, 2003, which helped them to a fifth beeline playoff appearance. The Flyers went 6-2-2 in that span, but they were in the bosom of their ninth beeline run to the playoffs.
This is different.
This is a rising.
“Maybe the Eagles’ acceptable helps. In the burghal there’s an astonishing energy,” Sixers advanced Dario Saric told reporters anon afterwards the Eagles exhausted the Patriots. “When I’m walking about my accommodation (building) or go into a shop, you can feel that the atmosphere is different. Maybe it’s because of that.”
These are alluring admissions because players usually will alone accept to attractive central themselves for motivation. Then again, aback an absolute arena is activated by the better win in the better action in the country, it is an abnormal moment.
It is a religious experience. The Eagles accept active anybody and everything.
Maybe it’s mojo. Maybe it’s juju. It’s absolutely not coincidence.
“It gets you hyped,” said Flyers accompaniment Michael Raffl. “Makes makes you see what is possible. It makes you dream.”
Those sorts of dreams accommodate blatant championship rings. Those sorts of dreams seemed asinine aftermost fall.
Neither the Flyers not the Sixers fabricated the playoffs aftermost season. In fact, the Sixers haven’t fabricated the playoffs aback 2012, which was the aftermost time either won a playoff series.
Now, both Claude Giroux and Joel Embiid will get MVP votes. Both the Flyers’ Dave Hakstol and the Sixers’ Brett Brown should get drillmaster of the year consideration.
Like the Eagles, who absent seven of their top 26 players to abrasion for continued stretches, both winter teams accept had issues.
The Flyers absent their No. 1 goalie, Brian Elliott, eight amateur ago. They absent his backup, Michael Neuvirth, four amateur later, adjoin the Rangers. Afterwards that bold they additionally absent accompaniment Wayne Simmonds, their best amateur over the aftermost two seasons.
They’re 4-0 and accept accustomed seven goals aback Neuvirth left.
The Sixers came aback from a 24-point arrears and exhausted the Heat on Feb. 14, and did it after all-star amateur Joel Embiid. They had been 2-8 after Embiid this season. They’ve additionally chock-full alarming backward leads.
“I anticipate the Eagles ability accept brindled some abracadabra dust on us or something,” Gostisbehere said. “It’s appealing cool.”
Things weren’t air-conditioned during the Flyers’ 10-game winless band from Nov. 11-Dec. 2. Things weren’t air-conditioned aback the Sixers absent nine of 10 from Dec. 4-23.
Teams that lose big like that aboriginal in the year usually falter in the dregs of their seasons. These are the dregs, but both teams are activated … and not vicariously. They got into the Eagles’ mix.
Embiid and Justin Anderson abounding the Super Bowl.
The Flyers got aback from a bold in Washington in time to appear the aftermost three abode of the NFC championship bold in Philadelphia on Jan. 21. The Flyers threw themselves and their wives a Super Bowl affair in a clandestine allowance at Vesper, a bistro in Philadelphia.
Afterward, some of the players took to the streets with the fans.
“It was ailing to be a allotment of it,” Raffl said. “I alive appropriate downtown. I was adulatory with all the bodies appropriate on Broad Street. It was amazing. I was out there for a little bit. It was awesome.”
He ability accept bumped into Simmons, who was cutting his Alshon Jeffery jersey.
“I watched the bold in my active room. I alive abreast Burghal Hall. Afterwards the game, I looked out from my balustrade and saw bodies screaming. Running. Activity crazy,” Simmons said. “So I went out of the streets for a little bit, but it got too hectic, so I went aback inside.”
There, he reflected on what acceptable it all agency in Philadelphia.
“You see how blessed they are. You see how aflame the burghal is,” Simmons said. “We appetite that aforementioned affair for the city.”
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