Sixers Bell Ringer Season Standings:
Joel Embiid - 18
Tobias Harris - 12
Ben Simmons - 7
Shake Milton - 5
Matisse Thybulle - 2
Danny Green - 2
Tyrese Maxey - 2
Dakota Mathias - 1
Furkan Korkmaz - 1
Tony Bradley - 1
Having recently enjoyed a season sweep of the division rival and hated Celtics in Boston, the Sixers continued their road trip by heading down to the Bayou to tackle the NBA’s fiercest themed team, the Pelicans. Nothing strikes fear in the hearts of opposing teams like the Pelli’s mascot and I’m worried I could have nightmares tonight because of Pierre the Pelican:
But perhaps the Sixers enjoyed too much gumbo last night. Despite facing the league’s 28th ranked defense per 100 possessions, Philadelphia tied their worst offensive output of the season with 94 points in a 101-94 loss where Zion Williamson utterly eviscerated the Sixers at the rim. That can’t be easy to pull off.
Let’s get to the bell ringer.
Tobias Harris: 23 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 steal, 2-5 from 3, 7-9 from the line
Like the recent loss against Memphis, Tobi was the lone starter to have a productive game on the offensive end, finishing 7-of-16 from the field and 7-of-9 from the foul line in just 34 minutes of action. He’s not only been Mr. Consistent this year, he’s been one of the team’s best 4th quarter closers. Unfortunately, not many others joined the cause on the offensive end tonight and things snowballed all the way down Bourbon street.
Ben Simmons: 10 points, 9 rebounds, 6 assists, 5 steals, 6 turnovers, 1 block, 3-6 fg, 4-9 FT
There was a moment there when I wondered if Ben Simmons might have one of his quietest games of the season, and also post a quintuple double of double digit points, rebounds, assists, steals, and turnovers. One more quarter and he mighta gotten there. Ben wound up with the highest (+5) impact on the team, but only taking 6 total field goals, and making 4-9 free throws is probably not the level of offensive aggression people would like to see from him; especially considering he has been in a slump as of late and they could really use a breakout game from their point forward. Particularly, if there will be more games where Embiid looks as passive as he did this evening.
Simmons was clearly overmatched when facing Zion Williamson, who flambeauxed the Sixers with 37 points, 15 boards, and 8 dimes.
The good news, after playing Ben with Dwight Howard around ten minutes per game over the last few games, Doc Rivers only played the incompatible duo 2 minutes this evening. Perhaps a sign of new experiments to come.
Joel Embiid: 14 points, 9 rebounds, 1 assist, 2 blocks, 5-16 from the field and 4-4 from the stripe
If the MVP candidate had not recently returned from missing 10 consecutive games with a bone bruise in his hyperextended left knee, I would have wondered just who dat? Because he looked like he didn’t have it in him to bulldoze the hulking Kiwi Steven Adams, and settled for jumper after jumper that simply didn’t fall. He went 1-5 from deep against Boston, and 0-3 tonight so his shot has been a little flat since returning.
Embiid was still a plus four in the stat sheet. But he was far from his usual dominant self, the one who crushed the Celtics the other night. It would perhaps be naive to expect him to deliver dominance on a consistent basis while clearly bothered by the bulky knee brace he’s wearing (combined of course with the reason he’s wearing it). But he looked quite sluggish. His conditioning isn’t where he needs it to be. As I’m writing this, I’m seeing tweets that he’s still at Smoothie Center putting up shots, so maybe he understands that and wants to get back to where he was mid March:
Now, that respect! Embiid is out on the floor shooting. A couple of fans spotted him while looking on the court and starting chanting MVP from a tunnel.— Keith Pompey (@PompeyOnSixers) April 10, 2021
Furkan Korkmaz: 12 points, 2 assists, 2 rebounds, 4 of 9 from the field, 4-8 from 3
In a game where points were harder to come by than a bangin’ fais do do during a pandemic, Korkmaz’s deep ball was one of the lone bright spots this evening. Fighting for a rotation spot because of Matisse Thybulle’s improved play, and the pending debut of George Hill, Furkan is going to need more hot shooting nights to stay relevant down the stretch here.
Who is the bell ringer tonight in N’Awlins
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