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The Sixers have struggled throughout the last two weeks as they've dealt with some pretty difficult obstacles to overcome. As the team dealt with a COVID-19 outbreak, they lost four players to the NBA health and safety protocol over the last few weeks. Two of those players happened to be starters.

Sixers center Joel Embiid was the fourth and final player to enter the protocol. Before he went out, the Sixers sat atop the Eastern Conference with an 8-2 record. Since he's been out, they embarked on a five-game losing streak and lost six of their last seven games.

Now, when they face the Sacramento Kings on the road on Monday night, the Sixers will come in with a 9-8 overall record. Lately, the Sixers have been facing playoff-caliber teams -- but they'll go head to head with another organization that's been dealing with a lot of difficult obstacles to overcome on Monday.

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On Sunday afternoon, a day before the Sixers and the Kings face off for the first time this year, Sacramento made a significant change to their coaching staff. According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, the Kings decided to cut the cord with their head coach, Luke Walton. 

Walton, who joined the Kings' organization in 2019 after a stint as the head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers, will now become a free agent as he searches for his fourth coaching job in the NBA. 

Meanwhile, the Kings will move forward with Alvin Gentry as the interim head coach. Gentry and the Kings will see their first set of action post-Walton when they host the Sixers at 10 pm est. on Monday. 

Heading into the matchup, the Kings are 6-11 and in the midst of a three-game losing streak. Monday's game won't be an easy matchup for the Sixers, but it will be a good opportunity for them to pick up their second win of their tough six-game road trip.  

Justin Grasso covers the Philadelphia 76ers for Sports Illustrated. You can follow him for live updates on Twitter: @JGrasso_.