One area of the game the Sixers have always hung their hat on is defense. With players like Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid, and Matisse Thybulle, it is not shocking the team has become a defensive powerhouse.
Seeing how those three pride themselves on that end of the floor has made defense contagious for the rest of the team. Multiple players have shown drastic improvements defensively over the past year.
Furkan Korkmaz is one of those players whose defense has come a long way. He has shown that he can be more than just a three-point threat on offense.
Doc Rivers spoke about this improvement in Korkmaz's game after practice on Sunday. Crediting the work he has put in to become a two-way player on the floor.
"He's really just playing harder, honestly. Two-way players are very important. Furk is doing all the little things that are required out of him. We're not asking him to be Ben, but we're asking them to be a better version of themselves defensively," said Rivers.
This willingness to buy in defensively makes Korkmaz the clear-cut favorite to replace Danny Green in the starting lineup. While it may not be to the same degree, Korkmaz fits the mold of Green's player archetype.
Rivers said it best on Sunday. Players do not have to defend at the level of Ben Simmons, they simply have to play their part.
The Sixers are going to need this willingness defensively if they are going to reach the NBA finals. All the teams in their way, including the Hawks currently, have multiple weapons that can do damage on the floor. Simmons, Embiid, and Thybulle can only do so much. It takes a collective effort to stop high-level offenses.
Korkmaz, along with the rest of the second unit, have embraced the "next man up" mentality all postseason. Now with Green out, it is on them to fill the void he leaves on both ends of the floor.
Kevin McCormick covers the Philadelphia 76ers for South Jersey's 97.3 ESPN and Sports Illustrated. You can follow him on Twitter: @KevinMcCNBA.