Sixers Bell Ringer Season Standings:
Joel Embiid - 1
The Knicks gave the Sixers some trouble early, and even tried having two players both wear a number-23 jersey to confuse Philadelphia’s defense, but a couple big runs in the second and third quarters allowed Doc Rivers’ squad to pull away for a relatively easy 109-89 win. Let’s choose a Bell Ringer from the 2-0 Sixers’ first road win of the season.
Joel Embiid: 27 points, 10 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal, 1 block, 1 turnover
Another game, another casually dominant offensive effort from the man in the middle. Embiid dropped 10 points in each of the first two quarters, and although he quieted down in the second half, he stepped up to hit a 3 when the Knicks had cut the lead to single digits midway through the fourth quarter. That play was followed by a Fleabag-like wink to the audience at home. More than ever before, Joel’s play is coming within the flow of the offense and doesn’t involve him having to fight like a guy in the trenches just to get the ball into scoring position. These outings feel entirely sustainable and should keep Embiid much fresher over the course of a long (albeit shorter than usual) season.
Ben Simmons: 15 points, 9 rebounds, 6 assists, 1 steal, 2 blocks, 3 turnovers
While Joel was the focal point of the offensive attack, the Sixers’ other star was the standout performer on the defensive end. Simmons put the clamps on Knicks youngster RJ Barrett, helping guide him down the path to a 2-of-15 night from the field. Ben was pivotal in Philadelphia’s game-changing 14-0 run in the second quarter, slamming home a weakside rebound, and moments later, making an incredible play to block a corner 3 and jumpstart a Seth Curry 3 in transition. Simmons had a few less-than-stellar finishes on drives, but overall, made smart cuts to the basket and did a great job keeping the ball moving. On those occasions when Ben heads downhill aggressively out of a pick-and-roll, you wonder why he doesn’t just attack that ferociously all the time.
Brilliant sequence by Ben Simmons here.— Tom West (@TomWestNBA) December 27, 2020
Really impressive closeout to block a corner 3.
Then he pushes the ball down the floor and sets up Seth Curry for 3. pic.twitter.com/QaukQLjCRM
Seth Curry: 17 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 steal, 0 turnovers
Tonight was Sixers fans’ first real taste of the hyper-efficient Seth Curry experience. The best Curry finished 6-of-8 from the field, including 3-of-4 from 3, even bailing out the team at the end of the shot clock with a long contested 3. Curry and Joel had a nice little two-man game going, with Seth pulling up for an open mid-range jumper on one occasion, and finishing with a silky finger roll early in the game. Curry’s gravity does so much for the team by mere virtue of his being on the court, and these highly productive games are icing on the cake.
Dwight Howard: 9 points, 6 rebounds, 1 steal, 1 block, 0 turnovers
Dwight continues to be a enormous boulder of energy whenever he comes into the game. He crashes through the offensive glass like a wrecking ball, putting tremendous pressure on the defense to have a body on him at all times. On the other end, Howard works hard as a rim protector and to deny second-chance opportunities himself, while flying around the court to trap or hedge. Having a backup center for the veteran minimum that not only doesn’t actively hurt you, but brings positive things to the table, continues to look like a better and better move from Daryl Morey.
Who is the Bell Ringer in the first road win of the season?
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