Analytics-driven Sixers ride the numbers to NBA playoffs

The Sixers trust the numbers.

They won 17 consecutive games before Monday’s Game 2 loss, the last nine of those wins without all-star center Joel Embiid. They also won their 15th straight without Dario Saric and their 16th straight without JJ Redick. Their 17th straight win was the first playoff victory since 2012.

It took talent, chemistry and fine coaching.

It also took 10 math whizzes and computer programmers, most of them with PhDs...