The first half of the Philadelphia 76ers' season began with much promise, being the fourth team to reach 20 wins.
Then came the inevitable losing road-trip streak, where they lost four and went to a below average of 7-8 away from home.
Before the streak, the Sixers were averaging 95.9 points per game.
During the streak, they managed a dismal 83.2.
Even with their skid, the Sixers are still ahead of the surging New York Knicks by three-and-a-half games in the Atlantic Division.
They host the Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday, a game the Sixers need to win to stay a legitimate contender in the East and keep the Knicks at arm’s-length.
If the Sixers want to continually make a push for the playoffs, they are going to need some good play from their forwards.
Spencer Hawes will be out another two weeks and that creates a big hole in the team.
The Sixers are 12-2 in the 14 games Hawes has played. The team has struggled without him, having a borderline .500 record.
Hawes is averaging 10.5 points, 8.3 rebounds and three assists per game this season.
He is shooting 57 percent from the floor, which is a career high. He is someone the Sixers definitely need if they are trying to go far in the playoffs.
They need an inside game because, late into games, teams are basically daring them to take low percentage shots and outside shots.
It’s killing the Sixers when their scorers are having an off night.
This year’s draft picks, Lavoy Allen and Nikola Vucevic, have shown promise and will probably get better as the season moves forward, but the Sixers need someone with more experience.
They need someone who will take up space in paint, have good back to the basket skills and who will get offensive and defensive rebounds.
That's easier said than done, but I personally believe the Sixers are actively trying to find one and going through every option—especially if they want to make a run this year.