Well, I’ve lost my chance to get a sweep. For SB Nation video game week, Adam Taylor from CelticsBlog invited me to take part in a Sixers-Celtics playoff series on NBA 2K, and I got off to a good start. I won each of the first two games by over 30 points. But Adam brought it at both ends of the floor in Game 3 to win, 57-48.
Adam’s team was disruptive all around. My biggest issue was that I couldn’t manage to stop his Celtics getting to the basket — they scored 30 points in the paint and racked up 15 free throw attempts. Besides needing to tighten up my pick-and-roll coverage in Game 4 and ensuring my centers drop back quickly enough, I need to do a better job against Kemba Walker. He was a headache throughout Game 3, generating plenty of looks inside to score 19 points on 7-of-14 shooting.
With all those free throws and 52 percent shooting overall (up significantly from the previous two games), the Celtics’ sharper offense reduced the transition opportunities I’d been succeeding with to start the series. I scored just 2 fast break points in this game.
Ben Simmons was still the leading force for me with 17 points (8-of-10 shooting), 5 rebounds and 4 assists, but didn’t have as many fast breaks or clear lanes to drive. Joel Embiid was solid with 14 points, 10 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 blocks, but shot a fairly cool 5-of-11 from the floor and I didn’t do too well with him in isolation. Factor in poor, 4-of-18 three-point shooting — which was partly due to some bad releases and forced shots by me, and Adam keeping his defenders locked in place around the arc more often — and it’s fair to say I got outplayed in this one. It was at least a close contest for most of the game, though, until the Celtics pulled away towards the end.
I’ll make some defensive tweaks and mix up my offense a bit more in Game 4, and hopefully flip the tone of this series back to where it was in the first two games. The Sixers may struggle beating the Celtics in real life playoff series, but I can still get a virtual win for Liberty Ballers at least.
The next game will be played at 4 PM ET on Tuesday, June 23, and will be streamed live as usual on Adam’s Twitch.