Monday's matchup between the San Antonio Spurs and Philadelphia 76ers in San Antonio isn't just your garden-variety contender vs. doormat game. In fact, Monday's meeting will mark the first time in NBA history that a team with a winning streak of 10 or more games will face a squad riding a 20-plus-game losing streak, per ESPN Stats & Info.
With their 13-game winning streak, the Spurs have surged past the Oklahoma City Thunder for first place in the Western Conference, as well as the sagging Indiana Pacers for the best record in the league. The Spurs have won 12 of those 13 games by eight or more points.
It's safe to say the 76ers will represent a dramatic step down in the competition. With 24 straight losses, Philadelphia has made a strong push to sink to the bottom of the league's standings, though at 15-55, the team still remains two games ahead in the win column over the Milwaukee Bucks, who own a 13-57 record.
After routinely getting trounced by opponents during their losing streak, the 76ers have proven more feisty in defeat as of late. They've lost their last four games by 10 or fewer points, with Friday's one-point loss to the New York Knicks the closest the squad has come to notching its 16th win of the season.
With the 76ers' next two games coming on the road against Western Conference powerhouses in the Spurs and Houston Rockets, it seems inevitable that the team will tie the 2010-11 Cleveland Cavaliers for the most consecutive losses (26) in league history. The team will, however, have decent odds of avoiding a potential record-setting 27th straight loss Saturday, as they'll face off against the 25-44 Detroit Pistons, losers of five games in a row in their own right.