CHARLOTTE, N.C. — When the Hornets flashed Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly on the Jumbotron, their fans responded with “Luuuuuke.”
Another chant quickly followed.
It’s a trend that has been happening all season — dedicated Sixers faithful traveling to road games or expressing their Sixers pride in cities they live in away from Philadelphia.
They took it to a new level Sunday when 400 fans with the Rights to Ricky Sanchez podcast made the trip to Milwaukee and filled the BMO Harris Bradley Center with all the Sixers-related chants you could imagine (see video).
“Milwaukee was amazing,” Joel Embiid, who met with the fans after the game, said Tuesday. “I’m not a crier, but if I was I would have probably cried after the game when I talked to them.”
The enormity of the Sixers’ camaraderie impressed JJ Redick.
“The thing the other night in Milwaukee was as cool as I’ve seen,” Redick said. “That’s something that in the U.S. you really don’t see that often. It’s probably more common in European soccer. The fans traveling like that and coming in full force is amazing.”
Embiid said he felt the same kind of vibe at the Spectrum Center in Charlotte when he heard the crowd chanting his mantra, “Trust the Process.” This time the fans were spread out around the arena and had the same impact on him.
“Our fans are amazing; they travel so well,” Embiid said. “Everywhere we go, there’s always a lot of Sixers jerseys all over the place. I love that. I don’t want to look in the crowd and not see any people supporting us. I want to see people that are at the game trying to support us so I can play harder and make them have a great time.”
The Sixers have proved they can win at home. They remain undefeated at the Wells Fargo Center in 2018. In order to lock up a playoff spot, and possibly attain home-court advantage, they will need to win on the road, too. Their fans have been showing up to help along the way.
“Philly sports fans are the best,” Redick said. “It’s funny because I’ve played in a couple towns where when Philly or Boston or Chicago or the Knicks would be in town, the arena sometimes would be 30 or 40 percent visiting team crowds. It’s fun to be on the other end of that now where we travel well.”