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Sixers Bell Ringer: Game 6 - Suns serve Sixers first loss of the season

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Undefeated no more

NBA: Philadelphia 76ers at Phoenix Suns Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

For a refresher on our Bell Ringer series, take a look back at our first post of the season.

Bell Ringer Standings

Joel Embiid - 2
Ben Simmons - 1
Tobias Harris - 1
Furkan Korkmaz - 1

Behind Devin Booker’s 40 points, the Phoenix Suns ended the Sixers’ dream at a historic 82-0 season, defeating Philadelphia, 114-109. The Sixers fought hard throughout the evening, tying the game at 100-apiece with under four minutes remaining. Alas, unlike Saturday night in Portland, there was not quite enough magic left for another thrilling victory for Brett Brown’s club. 81-1 wouldn’t be so bad. Here are your Bell Ringer candidates:

Al Horford: 32 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals, 1 block, 2 turnovers

When JJ Redick left in free agency, many people assumed it would be newcomer Josh Richardson taking on some of JJ’s role in floor spacing and dribble-handoffs. Who knew it would be Al Horford to fill the now-Pelicans’ shoes? Big Al had it going from long distance tonight, tying a career-high with five made triples on eight attempts. Two of those 3s were buzzer-beaters at the end of the first and second quarters.

It was Horford’s first 30-point game since he was in Atlanta (proof that Boston never appreciated Al), and just the second time in his career he has scored 25-plus in consecutive games. The Sixers’ best offense throughout the evening was feeding Horford in the high post, letting him survey the court, and either driving and dishing to an open teammate, or jab-stepping his way into an open jumper. Horford put forth an all-around stellar performance, and even turned back the clock a decade or so on the play that tied things up at 100:

Tobias Harris: 24 points, 10 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals, 2 turnovers

Tobi went quiet late in the game, but he was a monster on the offensive end for the first 30-plus minutes. He got the Sixers off to a hot start, dropping 10 first-quarter points on 4-of-5 shooting. Whenever Harris had a size mismatch, he found his way to the mid-post to finish over his smaller defender or initiate contact, while also making some nice cuts for easy buckets around the rim. Additionally, Harris was the only Sixer to record more than five rebounds on the night. If a couple more outside shots had fallen, we would be looking at a really outstanding game from Tobias.

Furkan Korkmaz: 20 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 turnovers

Getting the start ahead of Matisse Thybulle (and with Joel Embiid suspended), Furkan continues to make Brett Brown look like he has a green thumb with his ability to rapidly grow a bomber. One game after his game-winning 3, Korkmaz knocked down 4-of-7 shots from behind the arc in Phoenix, including a couple big shots as the Sixers attempted to rally in the fourth quarter. Furkan also looked competent off the bounce, highlighted by a sweet alley-oop feed to the much-appreciated Al Horford. Korkmaz has carved out quite a role for himself in just two weeks.

Ben Simmons: 6 points, 5 rebounds, 6 assists, 7 steals, 4 turnovers

I know, I know, I know. Simmons was a complete zero offensively. His inability to adjust when teams correctly focus on erasing his passing lanes is certainly concerning. But there are two sides to the court, and we have to at least acknowledge his career-high-tying seven steals. Those were very helpful! The plan for Simmons to play off Ricky Rubio as a roving free safety was an intriguing wrinkle until Rubio uncharacteristically started canning treys. On a couple occasions, Ben victimized Dario Saric, and you could sense an extra little smirk at the expense of his former teammate.

Poll

Who is the Sixers’ Bell Ringer in their first loss of the season in Phoenix?

This poll is closed

  • 90%
    Al Horford
    (895 votes)
  • 1%
    Tobias Harris
    (17 votes)
  • 4%
    Furkan Korkmaz
    (48 votes)
  • 3%
    Ben Simmons
    (33 votes)
993 votes total Vote Now