Playoff Bell Ringer standings:
Joel Embiid - 2
Tyrese Maxey - 1
Put away those brooms, Sixers fans. Behind a 34-point effort from Pascal Siakam (a playoff career-high), the Toronto Raptors staved off elimination with a 110-102 victory over the Sixers to force a Game 5 on Monday night back in Philadelphia.
The biggest concern for the Sixers is obviously the health of Joel Embiid, who struggled at times during Saturday’s contest. Tobias Harris continued to show his aggressiveness on both ends of the court before getting banged up with nearly eight minutes left in the game, while James Harden finished with a team-high 22 points in a game he shot 5-of-17 from the field. It wasn’t pretty, but the Sixers are still in the driver’s seat as the series heads back to the Wells Fargo Center.
Let’s get to the Bell Ringer:
Joel Embiid: 21 points, 8 rebounds, 3 assists, 5 turnovers
Anyone have a final count on how many times the national broadcast mentioned Embiid’s thumb? On the court, it appeared evident right away that the big man was affected by the injury, as he recorded just one point in the first quarter. He had some uncharacteristic turnovers trying to pass out of a double team before the second Raptor even got to him, leading to a couple of easy buckets for Toronto. Every time he drew contact, he immediately grabbed for the thumb, and you could see the frustration on his face grow throughout the game. 15 of his 21 points came in the middle two quarters, but he faded in the final 12 minutes and exemplified the aforementioned frustration with a blatant foul on Siakam and a technical foul with 3:06 left in the game. Nevertheless, there were moments when his midrange game didn’t miss a beat, and he still played 39 minutes. Look for the big man to respond in front of the Philly faithful on Monday.
James Harden: 22 points, 5 rebounds, 9 assists, 1 steal, 3 blocks, 4 turnovers
Harden led the team in points, but nearly half of them came from the charity stripe, where he made 10-of-11 free throws. He went 5-of-17 from the field, including 2-of-8 from beyond the arc. He continued to display his ability (sometimes when he shouldn’t have) to find open teammates, though, whether it was finding Embiid with an entry pass down low or kicking it to guys like Tobias Harris and Danny Green on the wing. Harden’s pass-first mentality will make you want to pull your hair out at times, but if the shots go in, nobody would bat an eye. Hopefully his shooting improves as the Sixers look to avoid a Game 6.
Tobias Harris: 15 points, 11 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal, 2 blocks, 3 turnovers
Once again, Harris was one of the best players on the court for the Sixers. Right from the opening tip, his intensity level remained high on offense and defense, scoring seven of his points in the first 12 minutes. His defensive improvements have been a pleasant sight to see, as it was clear that whenever he exited the game, the Raptors attacked whoever was matched up against Siakam. Harris did get banged up on a tough foul with just under eight minutes remaining in the fourth quarter, but it was nice to see him return to action less than three minutes later. Whatever happens, Harris just has to keep doing what he’s been doing through these first four games.
Who is the Bell Ringer in the Game 4 loss against Toronto?
This poll is closed