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Sixers Bell Ringer: Game 55

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The Sixers’ new star-studded starting five is a hit

NBA: Denver Nuggets at Philadelphia 76ers Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

For a refresher on what constitutes a Bell Ringer, please reference the initial post.

Bell Ringer Season Standings:

Joel Embiid - 20
Ben Simmons - 16
Jimmy Butler - 7
JJ Redick - 5
Robert Covington - 1
Dario Saric - 1
T.J. McConnell - 1
Furkan Korkmaz - 1
Landry Shamet - 1
Corey Brewer - 1

(Quick note: Amidst the chaos of the middle-of-the-night Tobias Harris trade, no Bell Ringer was posted to the site for Tuesday’s Toronto game. A tally was awarded to Joel Embiid in absentia for his 37-point, 13-rebound performance. Sorry, democracy.)

Following an active trade deadline week, the Sixers unveiled their new-look starting unit in front of a raucous Wells Fargo Center crowd for Moses Malone tribute night. After blowing a 16-point lead, a dominant final six minutes propelled Philadelphia to a 117-110 win over the Nuggets. Here are your Bell Ringer candidates:

JJ Redick: 34 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 turnovers

T-shirt vendors, you’re going to need to recall your Big Four merchandise. In the city of Philadelphia, we only deal with a Big 5. The rich man’s Joe Blanton of the new quintet was absolutely scorching Friday night, shooting 11-for-15 from the field and 6-for-7 from behind the arc. Time after time, Redick ran a Nuggets defender in circles only to pull up for a contested shot and drain it.

By the end of the game, Denver paid so much attention to Redick that it opened up a Joel Embiid post-up on a much smaller player, or left Ben Simmons wide open down the lane for a dunk. “Did you see some of the shots I made tonight?” Redick said after the game. We sure did, JJ.

Jimmy Butler: 22 points, 7 rebounds, 5 assists, 3 steals, 0 turnovers

A lot of people were antsy about the low shot total for Butler as the game progressed (4-for-9 from the field by game’s end), but he kept playing within the flow, not forcing things and finding open teammates. Butler was definitely featured more with the second unit, and that may be where he has to eat going forward.

Once the fourth quarter rolled around, though, it was still Jimmy time. He tallied 10 points in the final period, going 8-for-8 from the foul line (as part of a 14-for-14 night at the charity stripe). In particular, one moment stood out where he absolutely bailed the Sixers out of a terrible offensive possession by knocking down a fadeaway baseline jumper at the end of the shot clock. On the whole, it was a great night for Jimmy, who even had some nice initial chemistry out there with Boban.

Tobias Harris: 14 points, 8 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 steal, 0 turnovers

Tobias Harris looked to be having fun in his Sixers debut, hitting some early shots in the first quarter and calling for the crowd to cheer louder or nodding to them emphatically. As Harris said post-game, “You win, you have fun, you have a joy to the game.”

Harris lived up to his reputation as an efficient scorer, shooting 6-for-12 from the field and 2-for-3 from behind the arc. He has a lightning-quick release and a good off-the-dribble game to create his own shot. After the hot start, Harris was quiet for a bit, but made some big plays down the stretch as part of the Sixers’ finishing surge.

Ben Simmons: 12 points, 4 rebounds, 6 assists, 9 turnovers

The ball security was certainly problematic, but we’ll give Simmons a little leniency as the point guard was trying to figure out how to play with a bunch of new teammates on the fly. Simmons had some gorgeous feeds, including a perfect lob to Butler for an alley-oop where Ben tipped off Jimmy to the play with a nod of his head. He also had some emphatic dunks — I was particularly amused by one from the dunker’s spot where he looked to get open by hiding behind Boban — but none were bigger than the final one off a two-man action with JJ to give the team a 6-point lead with under two minutes remaining.

Joel Embiid: 15 points, 12 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal, 4 blocks, 4 turnovers

I can already see the flames in the comments section for including someone who shot 4-for-17 from the field. Even while battling through a stomach virus that had him as a final minute, game-time decision, and playing one of his worst games ever as a result, Embiid still found a way to make hugely impactful plays on the defensive end. Brett Brown called it a “high character game” for Embiid. The block of a corner 3 at the third quarter buzzer was pure hustle, but no play stood out more than when Malik Beasley made the grave mistake of challenging JoJo at the rim.

Poll

Who is your Bell Ringer for the win over the Nuggets?

This poll is closed

  • 92%
    JJ Redick
    (1316 votes)
  • 4%
    Jimmy Butler
    (58 votes)
  • 2%
    Tobias Harris
    (34 votes)
  • 0%
    Ben Simmons
    (9 votes)
  • 0%
    Joel Embiid
    (7 votes)
1424 votes total Vote Now