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Sixers Bubble Bell Ringer: Sixers Shake Off Spurs

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The Bubble Sixers know drama

NBA: San Antonio Spurs at Philadelphia 76ers Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports

If you need a Bell Ringer refresher, check out the first such post of the season. Here are the full season standings, which include the Bubble games:

Bell Ringer Standings

Ben Simmons - 16
Joel Embiid - 13 (includes 1 Bubble)
Tobias Harris - 12
Josh Richardson - 8
Furkan Korkmaz - 6
Matisse Thybulle - 3
Shake Milton - 3
Al Horford - 2
James Ennis - 1
Raul Neto - 1
Glenn Robinson III - 1

What would a Sixers game be like where they just led by 10-15 points the entire way and there was never any anxiety-inducing collapse or near-collapse? We may never know. Philadelphia let a 14-point fourth-quarter lead vanish into the ether, as San Antonio regained the advantage with inside of two minutes remaining. Then, with the Sixers trailing by two with seven seconds left, Shake Milton stepped into a 3-pointer and drained it to put the Sixers back in front. The Sixers played some solid team defense (for a change) to deny San Antonio at the rim on the ensuing possession. After a review, the refs determined that the rebound had gone out-of-bounds off San Antonio, and the Sixers ultimately escaped with a 132-130 victory.

Bubble Bell Ringer candidates:

Shake Milton: 16 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 turnover

Shake shook off his scoreless debut with the starters Saturday, and a bloody lip earlier in the game, to shoot an efficient 6-of-9 from the floor, with no shot bigger than the game-winner in the closing seconds. As Dejounte Murray hung back to try and prevent any possible entry pass down low to Joel Embiid, Milton decided all that open space was an affront to his game-on-the-line cajones. He took one quick dribble to get into his shooting rhythm and fired without a second thought. You have to love the confidence from the young man.

Joel Embiid: 27 points, 9 rebounds, 5 assists, 1 steal, 4 turnovers

You won’t come across many nights when Embiid has a negative plus/minus in a Sixers win, but don’t let his minus-3 mark Monday let you believe this wasn’t an excellent effort from the big man. Joel was an absolute wrecking crew once again on the interior, fouling out the opposing starting center for the second straight game. He even hit a slick, off-the-glass mid-range jumper in an homage to Spurs legend Tim Duncan. While Embiid did make some nice passes, there were also instances where he failed to properly account for double teams coming his way. It’s still a work in progress in that area for Joel.

Tobias Harris: 25 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists, 1 steal, 1 block, 3 turnovers

At this point, Tobi might be the most consistent Sixer across all seeding games and scrimmages in the bubble. He had yet another efficient scoring night, shooting 10-of-17 from the field, including 3-of-5 from 3. I love how hard he’s been attacking the basket the last few games, either driving aggressively and absorbing contact, or making decisive cuts to the rim. Opponents have to worry about Harris popping out behind the arc, so adding those baseline or backdoor cuts provides a nice variety to his game.

Al Horford: 9 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 blocks, 0 turnovers

It was a weird plus/minus role reversal with Al and Joel, as Horford tallied a game-high plus-17 mark for the game. While some of that was coincidental, there was no denying the strong play from Al tonight. He didn’t force the issue offensively, hitting a couple outside shots, and making some good reads, including an outstanding off-the-dribble dish to a cutting Tobias Harris. Horford also provided solid rim protection; his block of Keldon Johnson was everything you could want to see from your big hanging back on the pick-and-roll. The “team won’t fall apart when Joel sits because Al is here now” plan was a swimming success for one night, at least.

Josh Richardson: 19 points, 1 rebound, 2 assists, 1 steal, 1 block, 1 turnover

Initially, it looked like it might be the “Josh Richardson game,” as J-Rich hit two early 3-pointers on his way to 10 first-quarter points, just the third time this season he has reached double figures in the opening frame. While he cooled off from there, Richardson also knocked down a couple big shots midway through the fourth quarter. It still wasn’t Miami J-Rich, but tonight’s outing was a far cry better than his four points against Indiana, and you’ll definitely take Josh knocking down three 3s anytime.

Poll

Who is the Bubble Bell Ringer for the win over San Antonio?

This poll is closed

  • 65%
    Shake Milton
    (483 votes)
  • 21%
    Joel Embiid
    (160 votes)
  • 10%
    Tobias Harris
    (76 votes)
  • 1%
    Al Horford
    (14 votes)
  • 0%
    Josh Richardson
    (2 votes)
735 votes total Vote Now