In Full “Next Man Up” Mode, The Sixers Notch Another Win

aidanepowers

The Sixers, on the road in the 2nd game of a back to back, gave up 66 points in the first half against the lowly Detroit Pistons. Despite Detroit’s obvious shortcomings, it wasn’t shocking they were having success. The not so well rested Sixers were down Tobias Harris and Isiah Joe (COVID), Danny Green (hamstring tightness), Furkan Korkmaz (wrist) and obviously Ben Simmons (lack of accountability).

They were running an 8 man lineup like a college basketball team, and a rotation that featured 3 big men. Down at the half, it would not have been shocking if they folded up shop.

Instead, the Pistons never made it to 100 points. The Sixers won by double digits.

Tonight’s win, and the fifth straight for the Sixers, won’t be on the season in review highlight tape. But it was yet another glowing example of this teams depth and mental fortitude. The Pistons are a bad team who make mistakes 20 year olds in the NBA make. But the Sixers defensive intensity completely enveloped them in the 2nd half. They professionally put this team away en route to a fifth straight win.

A lot of the good things you saw tonight have been a repetitive thing year round.

  • Seth Curry:

Kyle Neubeck wrote in his post-game recap that if you just looked at Seth Curry’s season numbers, you would think he was a big man just finishing things around the rim. Neubeck is totally right here. Curry, with 20+ points for a third straight game has been a straight flamethrower. He is shooting a ridiculous 61% overall and over 50% from 3. Every shot he puts up feels like it’s going in. And most importantly, he’s been reliable in crunch time moments, the know bug-a-boo for this Sixers core.

  • The Bench Big Men:

Andre Drummond and Paul Reed combined to form a Towers Lineup with a lack of perimeter players available. And in a shocking revelation, it actually worked. The two came in and sparked a comback early in the first half, and had more of the same while anchoring the bench unit in the early fourth quarter. Andre Drummond continues to be a bench glue guy who knows his role: rebound everything. He also was the key to the best defensive possession of the night with another perfect sets of rotations that ended in a Drummond deflection and steal. All while getting booed by the Detroit crowd? He has been a great get and even more valuable with Joel Embiid’s early season shooting woes.

As for Paul Reed, the guy just works his ass off. His personality matches his playing style where he is just full of energy. He played so hard defensively even when matched up with Jerami Grant. He, like Drummond, made it a point to just rebound everything. B-Ball Paul, also gave us my favorite highlight of the night and probably the year.

  • Tyrese Maxey/Shake Milton:

Happy 21st birthday, Tyrese! Fitting that our young point guard is a year older because his majority seems to be blossoming. He is forcing less and less on offense, and getting lost less and less on defense. Both he and Shake Milton were in total control tonight, which isn’t always the case with those two. Sometimes, they play like a cat who gets a blanket stuck on their claw, and decides the best way to get it off is to destroy the entire room.

Having Milton back from injury aides Maxey so much. Milton, who was a given the start tonight, can provide instant offense off the bench. He had a good balance of three point shooting and attacks to the rim. Also gave dads all over Philly a reason to stand and applaud after he followed his missed shot and got a layup out of it.

 

It’s a win against Detroit in November. Obviously nothing to write home about, but the Sixers continue to win when the chips are stacked against them. And with the win, they are the #1 seed in the East. Just like we all expected, right?!

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