What the Orlando Magic's playoff competitors have left on their schedule

The Orlando Magic ample opportunity to take care of their business and secure a high seed in the Eastern Conference Playoffs. They, like everyone else, will spend their off nights scoreboard watching. It might be just as important what everyone else has left too.

Franz Wagner and the Orlando Magic are preparing for their stretch run to the Playoffs. They will navigate a difficult schedule on the way.
Franz Wagner and the Orlando Magic are preparing for their stretch run to the Playoffs. They will navigate a difficult schedule on the way. / Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports
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What the Orlando Magic's playoff competitors have left on their schedule

6. Philadelphia 76ers (38-30)
Home/Road: 5/9
Opponent Win%: .489 (14th easiest)
Biggest Game Left: April 4 at Miami
Games Left vs. Magic (Season Series): April 12 in Philadelphia (PHI leads 2-0)

The Philadelphia 76ers have been waiting for Joel Embiid's return. And they got some good news on that front as his doctors said they were pleased with his progress and he has begun a tentative return to practice. There is a chance Embiid will be back on the floor in April.

That does not feel like it could not come soon enough. The Sixers have gone 9-13 since Embiid tore his meniscus. That has opened the door for a team like the Magic to climb into the 4/5 discussion and made the race for sixth wide open.

Even if Embiid returns and comes back close to the MVP level he was playing at, the Sixers arguably have the toughest path forward, even if the opponents are not difficult. Having just five home games remaining is a tough task. Although, Philadelphia is 17-15 away from Wells Fargo Center.

The Sixers start a four-game, seven-day West Coast road trip Wednesday in Phoenix against the Phoenix Suns. That includes the Los Angeles double (March 22 and 24). The Philadelphia 76ers also still have two games remaining against the LA Clippers (at home on March 27 when they get back from their West Coast trip).

There is no benefit of multiple games home after that road trip either. They go right back on the road on March 29 to take on the Cleveland Cavaliers.

It is not an easy road for the Sixers, even with the hope of getting Embiid back. But the opponent level is not the strongest. They do not have any of the elite teams in the league remaining on their schedule.

And a closing three-game homestand -- vs. the Detroit Pistons (April 9), Orlando Magic (April 12) and Brooklyn Nets (April 14) -- is the reward for such a road-heavy finish. If Philadelphia is in striking distance to climb a spot, this is still a team that is dangerous to do so.