The Sixers didn’t have their first winning road trip of the year. Not even close. They were defeated by the San Antonio Spurs by the score of 123-96.
The game was basically over by the end of the third quarter, so the Sixers’ young players were able to get minutes. Jonah Bolden made his way on to the court in the last seconds of the third, creating belief that Brett Brown was waving the white flag on the game. However, in a baffling move, Brown brought his starters out to start the fourth quarter, perhaps in an attempt to gain some momentum. This did not happen, and the Sixers were never able to pull within 20 points in the last quarter. With 8:05 left in the fourth, the white flag was finally waved, the starters sat down, and Bolden, along with TJ McConnell, Shake Milton, Amir Johnson, and Furkan Korkmaz took the floor.
In that time, we were gifted with 10 points from Milton, who went 2-for-3 from beyond the arc, and a block from Bolden, truly the only bright spots in an abysmal game. Both the Sixers’ starters and second unit played sloppy and uninspired basketball. Joel Embiid had four of the Sixers’ 10 turnovers. Jimmy Butler shot 3-for-13 for a total of six points. The team only took seven free throws the entire game and shot 40.8% from the field.
Ben Simmons and JJ Redick were the only two players with half decent offensive output. Both Simmons and Redick finished the game with 16 points, on 70% and 63.6% shooting from the field, respectively. Simmons also added six assists and six rebounds to his stat line.
The San Antonio Spurs, on the other hand, had many bright spots in their game. Rudy Gay, LaMarcus Aldridge, and DeMar DeRozan all had 20 or more points. Davis Bertans had 16 points off the bench, and shot 75% from beyond the arc. Both Derrick White and Aldridge had 3 blocks, while each of the Sixers’ three blocks came from a different player (including JJ Redick?!?!?).
The Sixers head back home to Philadelphia for a two-game home stand. They will face the New York Knicks on Wednesday, followed by the Toronto Raptors on Saturday. It will be important to put this loss behind them and use the Knicks game to regroup and refocus. If the Sixers want to compete come May and June, one of their first big tests is waiting for them on Saturday night.
Joel Embiid finished the game with 13 points and 11 rebounds. All of those points came in the first half, as the Spurs held him scoreless in the second half.
The Spurs bench had 56 points, compared to 35 from the Sixers reserves.
The Spurs shot 94.1% from the line on 17 attempts. The Sixers shot 71.4% on seven attempts.