Head coach Jimmy "Cruiser" Mint won't have to put forth much of a game plan for his Dragons to pummel the lowly Sixers in their upcoming series. In fact, it would be almost disrespectful for Drexel to run any plays at all, considering the Sixers don't play defense.

Head coach Jimmy “Cruiser” Mint won’t have to put forth much of a game plan for his Dragons to pummel the lowly Sixers in their upcoming series. In fact, it would be almost disrespectful for Drexel to run any plays at all, considering the Sixers don’t play defense.

The Drexel men’s basketball team finished its official schedule March 8 in the Colonial Athletic Association Tournament. But the Dragons announced March 21 that they have one more opponent to play before the true offseason: the Philadelphia 76ers.

The two teams will compete in a two-day home-and-home series dubbed “Philadelphia Series of Greatness.” The games will be held May 17 and 18, with the first being played at the Wells Fargo Center and the second being played at the Daskalakis Athletic Center. The winner of the series will get to play the 2014-15 season in the Colonial Athletic Association, while the loser will be relegated to play in the NBA’s Eastern Conference.

“The Sixers are extremely excited about the opportunity to play against a team as talented as the Drexel Dragons,” Sixers General Manager Ham Pinky said at the series announcement press conference. “And the allure of a league like the CAA is even more added incentive.”

According to Drexel head coach Jimmy “Cruiser” Mint, the series has been in the works for quite some time.

“We agreed to this series about a year ago,” Mint said at the press conference. “It’s part of a nationwide initiative to give lesser squads around the country more exposure in order to grow their fan bases.”

Despite the Dragons’ high standing in the basketball world, the Sixers organization apparently tried to play hard to get during the planning stages. Mint said that scheduling negotiations went on for months, with those in the Sixers camp at one point demanding that the Dragons allow one of the games to be played during Drexel’s regular season. He said tensions were high, but eventually cooler heads prevailed.

“We respected their request, but we calmly explained to them that we couldn’t take that hit to our [Rating Percentage Index],” he said. “Going from playing teams like Hofstra and James Madison to playing a team like the Sixers? Don’t get me wrong, we appreciate their interest. But we have to look out for ourselves first and foremost.”

Mint’s concerns over the level of competition were echoed by Drexel Athletic Director Dr. Zeric Willmer.

“Just imagine what required NBA participation would do to our recruiting,” Willmer said. “The implications of being relegated to a league like the NBA’s Eastern Conference would be catastrophic for this program’s development. After building our way to the nationally revered heights of the Colonial Athletic Association, we want to make sure we maintain this high level of basketball for years — even decades — to come.”

Drexel senior Frantz Massenat was in attendance at Monday’s press conference and said he is looking forward to the series for his own reasons.

“I always love mentoring guys who are still working their way up,” Massenat said. “I talk to my cousins on their middle school teams all the time, and I’ve talked to a few fellas from the Sixers a couple of times. I know they’re big fans, and it’ll probably be a neat experience for them to play against some of their heroes. Hopefully we can teach them a few things that they can use as they continue to chase their dreams.”

Mint said he also hopes the series teaches a few lessons — but to a different crowd.

“We’re trying to send a message to the Big 5,” Mint said. “Drexel is showing Penn, St. Joe’s and La Salle how the big boys should be doing it. If we can find the room in our budget for a road game against a team that doesn’t historically demand the respect that we do, you can as well.”

Mint took a moment to wipe a tear from his eye before continuing.

“Please. Just come to the DAC, you guys. Please,” he pleaded into the cameras.

Tickets go on sale April 14. Ticket quantities will be capped at 2,000 for both venues, in large part because of size — and turnout — constraints. Tickets are not expected to sell out.