BOSTON - The 76ers endured a 26-game losing streak and tied the longest skid in major professional sports history. They have lost 28 of their last 29 games.
However, the tanking Sixers (16-59) remain a long shot to finish with the NBA's worst record. The Milwaukee Bucks have all but locked up the best chance for the top pick in the draft lottery.
Milwaukee (14-61) has a two-loss cushion over the Sixers with seven games remaining. And the Bucks will be hard-pressed to win two of those games.
Four of their opponents - the Chicago Bulls, Toronto Raptors (twice), the Indiana Pacers, and Washington Wizards - were slotted as playoff teams heading into Thursday's action. The two other teams - the Cleveland Cavaliers and Atlanta Hawks - were still in postseason contention.
The Sixers' seven-game home stretch includes two seemingly winnable games against the struggling Boston Celtics. They face the Celtics (23-52) on Friday at TD Garden. The Sixers will host Boston on April 14 at the Wells Fargo Center.
Their other opponents - Brooklyn, Toronto, Memphis, Charlotte, and Miami - were pegged as playoff teams as of Wednesday night.
If things hold up, the Bucks will have a 25 percent chance of getting the top pick in the NBA draft lottery. The Sixers will have a 19.9 percent chance.
But the players on the Sixers roster say they aren't focused on the lottery.
"We want to win," Tony Wroten said of the last seven games. "Obviously, we are not making the playoffs. So we are going to take these like they are our playoff games, like a seven-game series."
Race for Last
The team that finishes with the NBA's worst record has a 25 percent chance of winning the draft lottery. The Bucks have a two-game edge on the 76ers. Here are their remaining schedules:
Friday at Boston (23-52), Saturday vs. Brooklyn (40-34), Wednesday at Toronto (43-32), April 11 at Memphis (44-31), April 12 at Charlotte (37-38), April 14 vs. Boston, and April 16 at Miami (52-22).
Friday at Chicago (43-32), Saturday vs. Toronto (43-32), Wednesday vs. Indiana (53-23), April 11 vs. Cleveland (31-45), April 12 at Washington (39-36), April 14 at Toronto, April 16 vs. Atlanta (32-42).