Although the Sixers are just 10-20 over the last 30 games, the NBA forces players to have short memories, especially if the majority of the outcomes aren't favorable.
The Sixers (20-26) chose to focus on their three victories in the last four games, all at the Wells Fargo Center. If they hadn't blown a 17-point lead at home to Memphis last Monday, the Sixers might be riding a four-game winning streak into Monday's home game against Orlando. The Magic (14-33) have lost 20 of their last 22 games.
The Sixers have yet to string together more than three wins in a row at any point this season,
Despite their struggles, they are just 31/2 games out of the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. The Sixers are midway through their longest homestand of the season, with home games ahead against Indiana, Charlotte, and the Los Angeles Clippers.
Forward Thaddeus Young said the Sixers must remain in a winning groove.
"It's time," Young said. "We haven't lost our confidence and we're playing better. We want to make a push for the playoffs and it has to start now."
The Orlando game marks the return of promising second-year center Nik Vucevic, drafted by the Sixers with the 16th overall pick in 2011. He is averaging 12.1 points and 11.3 rebounds. Maurice Harkless is a reserve for the Magic who was drafted by the Sixers with the 15th pick in last summer's draft.
Both players were part of the four-team, 12-player deal that brought center Andrew Bynum to the Sixers. Bynum has not played yet because of his ailing knees, but he hopes to suit up for the Sixers this month.
Contact John N. Mitchell at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow @JmitchInquirer on Twitter.