The Philadelphia 76ers returned home on Saturday after a six-game road trip and welcomed back Joel Embiid and Tobias Harris to the lineup.
It feels weird to say the Sixers let a game get away from them when they trailed by 20, but that’s really what happened tonight.
- The Sixers started the game out of sync, allowing too many easy cuts and drives to the basket. KAT and Anthony Edwards led the early attack with 15 and 12 first-quarter points, respectively.
- An all-bench unit gave the Sixers a breath of fresh air to start the second quarter. Led by Furkan Korkmaz, the Sixers’ second unit was able to cut the lead to seven. The five minutes with Korkmaz, Isaiah Joe, Georges Niang, Danny Green, and Andre Drummond were the only good minutes the Sixers got in the first half.
- The offense in the first half was lifeless. Embiid getting to the line was the only way they could generate points. Embiid took eight first-half free throws. The team finished the half at 31.4 percent field goal shooting.
- Tobias Harris looked especially rusty, with just two points in the first half.
Second Half, Overtime, and Double Overtime
- Joel Embiid. Nice to have him back, huh? After struggling early from the field, Embiid finished with 42 points, 14 rebounds, three assists, and went to the free throw line 21 times.
- Doc Rivers going to Danny Green with the starters instead of Matisse Thybulle sparked the Sixers’ comeback; they went on a 12-3 run to cut the lead to single digits.
- Tyrese Maxey had a nice scoring spurt at the end of the 3rd, rattling off six points at the end of the quarter. He continues to look to draw contact on drives, a very good sign.
- The Sixers tightened up defensively in the third quarter. Georges Niang was often tasked with guarding KAT while Embiid roamed the paint. The Sixers continued this in the 4th with Harris guarding Towns.
- Harris came alive in the 4th, scoring 11, although his missed free throw allowed the game to still be tied at the end of regulation.
- D’Angelo Russell was a menace in the second half. He was able to get any shot no matter how the Sixers defended him.
- Andre Drummond, what a tip-in.
- The Sixers’ biggest flaw is what ultimately cost them. Their lack of a true point guard made it hard to generate shots late, and a turnover with 10.3 seconds left is ultimately what the Wolves needed to finish the Sixers. What a bummer to waste this performance by Embiid.