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Sixers Bell Ringer: Sixers top Houston for sixth straight win

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Philadelphia 76ers v Houston Rockets Photo by Troy Fields/NBAE via Getty Images

Sixers Bell Ringer season standings:

Joel Embiid - 24
Tobias Harris - 13
Ben Simmons - 11
Shake Milton - 6
Tyrese Maxey - 3
Matisse Thybulle - 2
Danny Green - 2
Furkan Korkmaz - 2
Dakota Mathias - 1
Tony Bradley - 1

Lately, the Sixers have played teams tanking and teams missing players. Wednesday night, they played a Houston Rockets team both tanking and missing players. Houston only dressed eight players, which was effectively seven as D.J. Augustin wasn’t really available. Then, when Kevin Porter Jr. sprained his ankle, the Rockets were down to six available. Although Houston competed hard enough to avoid this game becoming a laugher, the Sixers maintained a comfortable lead throughout the evening, and were able to rest the starters for the fourth quarter. The Sixers secured their sixth straight win, 135-115, and the only bummer of the night was Washington falling one point short of upsetting Milwaukee. Now for the Bell Ringer.

Joel Embiid: 34 points, 12 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 block, 3 turnovers

Philadelphia 76ers v Houston Rockets Photo by Cato Cataldo/NBAE via Getty Images

It’s not exactly surprising that Joel Embiid ate when a shorthanded Rockets team was forced to have Kelly Olynyk guard him while playing 40 minutes. But it’s still impressive to see just how efficiently dominant Joel can be. Take a look at this stat:

The big man still got it done in a big way, while resting up plenty in this midst of this incredibly condensed portion of the schedule. Joel was able to body his way into great post position time and again, often resulting in Houston being forced to foul (14-of-16 at the foul line). On the rare occasions where things didn’t immediately work out, Embiid kept fighting underneath on his way to seven offensive rebounds. He also had himself a terrific passing game, even if the assist total didn’t quite reflect it. At least twice, Joel made an outstanding read to an open teammate for 3, who then missed the shot, but Embiid got the offensive rebound and putback. Performances like this from Joel are how the Sixers can perfectly strike that balance of staying in first place and staying healthy.

Matisse Thybulle: 5 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists, 3 steals, 3 blocks, 2 turnovers

Philadelphia 76ers v Houston Rockets Photo by Troy Fields/NBAE via Getty Images

If you’re not having an absolute ball watching Matisse Thybulle play defense 3-to-4 nights per week, we can’t be friends. The defensive dynamo continues to make his All-Defense Team case, recording six stocks in just 20 minutes of action. The Sixers showing some zone looks with Matisse out front was catnip for us viewers passionate about watching the second-year wing jump passing lanes. Armoni Brooks and Kelly Olynyk must not have read the scouting report on Thybulle’s penchant for blocking jump shots from behind, either. What a uniquely enjoyable player Matisse has become in such a short period of time.

Shake Milton: 19 points, 2 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal, 2 blocks, 0 turnovers

Philadelphia 76ers v Houston Rockets Photo by Troy Fields/NBAE via Getty Images

Shake was the main head of the multi-headed bench hydra tonight, hitting three 3s on seven attempts, as part of an overall 8-of-17 night from the field. Milton had the full arsenal working: the funky shots in the mid-range, the stepback 3, the ambidextrous finishes at the basket. With both George Hill and Tyrese Maxey assuming larger distribution roles, Shake was free to focus more on creating for himself, and he created a mighty fine performance.

Tyrese Maxey: 12 points, 4 rebounds, 7 assists, 3 turnovers

Philadelphia 76ers v Houston Rockets Photo by Cato Cataldo/NBAE via Getty Images

Maxey started off his night by knocking down a pair of 3s, always a welcome sight for Sixers fans. He later ripped off one of his patented floaters, this time with a banked-in twist. The rookie was able to repeatedly knife into the paint, creating easy buckets for Tobias Harris and Dwight Howard at the basket. Doc Rivers handed the keys of the offense to Tyrese in the fourth quarter and the youngster brought it home without a scratch.

Poll

Who is the Bell Ringer in the win over Houston?

This poll is closed

  • 62%
    Joel Embiid
    (1114 votes)
  • 14%
    Matisse Thybulle
    (255 votes)
  • 17%
    Shake Milton
    (312 votes)
  • 5%
    Tyrese Maxey
    (92 votes)
1773 votes total Vote Now