For the 7th regular season time in a row, and for the 11th time in the last 12 overall meetings, the Sixers could match the Heat, losing 99-93 after a 3 point half time lead.
Overall, I can't be overly upset at the effort. Turner played tremendously throughout the game and was aggressive getting to the hoop and taking advantage of mismatches. Andre Iguodala was playing very well before going out in the third due to an eye contusion, forcing turnovers and creating in transition. Even Elton Brand and Thaddeus Young, who shot a combined 5-16, had good looks that they normally convert. Spencer Hawes is what he is (hint: that's a nice way of saying not very good). It's really just three people I took exception with.
Doug Collins, mainly for rotations. Turner rests for a substantial amount of time to end the first quarter, comes into the game to start the second with Terrel Harris on him and scores 11 points on 6 shots in 3 minutes. Turner comes out of the game. Why? I don't know. It made no logical sense. Turner couldn't have been tired. He was exploiting the matchup. Collins took him out before Miami was forced to adjust. Really weird.
What made it more perplexing is once Turner had the same matchup in the third, Collins immediately called Turner's number, and he scored. So why didn't he continue exploiting it earlier? Strange.
Second, Jrue Holiday. I actually thought Jrue played well to start the game, making shots and the extra pass, but then it fell apart quickly. His sequence to start the third really put the Sixers in a hole, a bad combination of turnovers, poor shots, and over-rotating on D.
Louis Williams and his shot selection down the stretch, which is partly on Doug Collins and his insistence to go with Lou to close games, although with Iguodala out his options were more limited than normal.
In the end, the result was as expected, particularly on the road with the Heat coming off a bad loss, and the shots the Sixers were able to get was somewhat encouraging. Losing like that is still frustrating, though.
Player of the game: Evan Turner
Next up: Tonight, vs Toronto, 7 PM.
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