Sixers Bell Ringer standings
Joel Embiid - 19
James Harden - 16
Tyrese Maxey - 11
Tobias Harris - 5
Shake Milton - 4
Paul Reed - 3
De’Anthony Melton - 1
Georges Niang - 1
Montrezl Harrell - 1
Matisse Thybulle - 1
A brutal stretch of games continued for the Sixers on Saturday night when they visited the smoking-hot Milwaukee Bucks who were looking to build on a 16-game win streak.
Well, the Buck stops here.
The Sixers overcame a 18-point deficit to defeat the Bucks 133-130 in Milwaukee on Saturday night.
It was a battle of the big three from each team in a first half that ended with the Sixers trailing by six. Joel Embiid, James Harden, and Tyrese Maxey combined for 39 points for the Sixers while Giannis Antetkounmpo, Jrue Holiday, and Brook Lopez combined for 41 for the Bucks. The Sixers’ defense continued to look questionable at best, especially in the paint. The Bucks scored 28 points in the painted area by the break.
Tobias Harris was ruled out for the rest of the contest at halftime with calf soreness. At the break, he had just three points and had only taken two shots in the entire first half.
A few missed shots from the Sixers and some hot hands from long range for the Bucks, and quickly Philadelphia was down double-digits in the third. Greyson Allen led Milwaukee in the third with 20 points in an explosive frame that led the Bucks to a 99-85 lead going into the fourth.
Then, P.J. Tucker was ruled out with back spasms. Another blow.
Really, just about anything that could go wrong for the Sixers was going wrong, but a sudden 15-2 run in the fourth led off by two Georges Niang triples clawed the Sixers back within one. The teams traded buckets as time wound down, but the Sixers finally took a lead with a crucial three from Embiid with less than a minute to play. Maxey grabbed the rebound on the Bucks’ next possession, drawing a foul and hitting both from the line to put the Sixers up by four with 25 seconds to play. The Sixers were able to hold on, completing the comeback and ending the Bucks’ win streak. The 48-point fourth quarter is Philadelphia’s highest-scoring fourth quarter in any game since 1972.
The Sixers’ road trip continues Monday when they travel to Indiana to take on the Pacers.
Now, let’s get to the Bell Ringer.
Tyrese Maxey: 26 points, 3 rebounds, 1 steal
Maxey made his second consecutive start after a few weeks coming off the bench, and it was another game where his speed seemed to be the best thing the Sixers’ offense had going for them. Maxey came out of the gate eager and energetic and was rewarded for his aggression getting into the paint with frequent trips to the line. He shot 6-for-6 from the charity stripe in the first half. Maxey showed off his versatility in the third, hitting lay-ups, mid-range jumpers and triples for his 12 points in the period. He was relatively quiet in the fourth, but grabbed a crucial rebound with less than a minute to play, drawing a foul and hitting both free throws to put the Sixers up by four with 25 seconds left. He finished with 26 points, three rebounds, and one steal.
Joel Embiid: 31 points, 6 rebounds, 10 assists
Not only did Embiid lead the Sixers in the first frame with nine points, he also had four assists and was crucial in the Sixers’ ball movement early, drawing the Bucks attention away and setting up his teammates for easy buckets. Embiid looked dominant from the elbows, one of his favorite spots on the court, even with two and sometimes three Bucks on him. After a 12-point first half, Embiid — alongside Maxey — kept the Sixers even remotely in the game with some insane buckets in the third, some he had absolutely no business making. He only scored seven points in the fourth, but he hit a crucial three that gave the Sixers the lead with less than a minute to play. Then, he played excellent defense on Giannis on one of the Bucks’ final possessions, forcing a travel out of the Greek Freak. He finished with 31 points, 10 assists, and six rebounds
James Harden: 38 points, 9 rebounds, 10 assists, 1 steal
Harden got off to a hot start, taking advantage of some extra space on the perimeter gifted to him by Jrue Holiday to hit two triples in his eight-point first frame. Harden’s cooled down in the second, struggling a number of times in isolation. He ended up shooting just 5-for-16 from the floor with two turnovers in the first half, but he still led the Sixers at the break with 15 points. Harden had a quiet third, but ramped back up for a number of clutch buckets as the Sixers were mounting their comeback in the fourth. In fact, he put up 19 points in the critical frame. Again, it wasn’t his most efficient night shooting — just 11-for-26 from the floor — but he still contributed a massive 38 points (his highest as a Sixer), nine rebounds and 10 dimes and helped keep the Sixers in it down the stretch, so not a bad night at the office.
Who was the Sixers Bell Ringer for their comeback win over the Bucks?
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