Sixers regular season Bell Ringer standings:
Joel Embiid- 9
James Harden- 6
Shake Milton- 4
Tobias Harris- 4
Tyrese Maxey- 3
Paul Reed- 2
De’Anthony Melton- 1
Georges Niang- 1
In the first half, Los Angeles stars Kawhi Leonard and Paul George were hitting everything, and the Clippers bench was outclassing that of the Sixers. LA formulated a 20-point advantage, and it was easy to envision a forthcoming Sixers loss and the, “Oh well, a 6-1 homestand is still terrific” mindset to follow. But the Sixers had other ideas, chipping away at the deficit and then surging ahead with a huge third quarter. The superstars led the way, but Philadelphia received contributions from the second unit as well (Shake Milton and Georges Niang combined to shoot 9-of-10 from the field in the second half). The Clippers fought back and even briefly retook the lead midway through the fourth quarter, but the Sixers once again displayed great mental fortitude in finishing off a 119-114 win. Let’s look at the top performances after the Sixers finished off a perfect 7-0 homestand.
James Harden: 20 points, 11 rebounds, 21 assists, 1 steal, 3 turnovers
How can one of the best scorers of his generation now be one of the best passers of his generation? Doesn’t seem fair. Harden tied Wilt Chamberlain and Mo Cheeks for the Sixers franchise record with 21 assists in this game. Illustrious company, to say the least. The Beard collects those dimes in every way imaginable: feathery entry passes that float just out of the defender’s reach, rocket passes downcourt in transition, pinpoint homing missiles through traffic in pick-and-rolls, seemingly casual swing passes around the arc that nestle right into the shooting pocket. James is a maestro on the court and making life so much easier for all of his teammates. Oh, and he also had a triple-double just for fun.
20 PTS— NBA (@NBA) December 24, 2022
21 AST (career-high)
James Harden becomes only the 8th player in NBA history to record 70 triple-doubles. pic.twitter.com/VJRXmjrbW6
Joel Embiid: 44 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 steal, 2 blocks, 1 turnover
That a 44-point night isn’t the headliner speaks to the historic nature of Harden’s outing, but also how routine something like this from Embiid has become. Joel helped keep the team afloat when the Clippers started out red hot with 15 points of his own in the first quarter. He was an assassin in the mid-range tonight, perhaps taking a page out of opponent Kawhi Leonard’s playbook. When he found a smaller defender on him via switch or by sprinting downcourt in transition, Embiid did an excellent job of sealing to create space for the entry pass to come in and turn for the easy bucket. He also brought the game home with 10 points in the final seven minutes of the contest. As always, soak up every minute of the Joel Embiid experience.
Joel Embiid tonight:— NBA (@NBA) December 24, 2022
The Sixers win their 7th straight pic.twitter.com/pLtQMOMKFj
De’Anthony Melton: 13 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 steals, 0 turnovers
As has so often been the case this season, Melton served as a perfect complementary piece to the team’s two higher-profile players. De’Anthony had a pair of steal in a one-minute span late in the third quarter; both led directly to transition buckets as the Sixers finally retook the lead. He also hit a trio of treys in the second half, one a highly-contested stepback with a couple minutes left in the game to stretch the lead to seven points. This man is the dawg mentality meme incarnate.
James Harden finds DeAnthony Melton for the open triple pic.twitter.com/VdZP1SXPXD— Sixers Nation (@SixersNationCP) December 24, 2022
Who is the Sixers’ Bell Ringer in the win over the Clippers?
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