Sixers fight back from 19 point deficit to defeat Cavs

During the third quarter of the Sixers second pre-season game, fans at the Wells Fargo were less than satisfied. Yes it was pre-season but shooting was far too inconsistent amongst the rotational players all vying for a roster spot. But after a huge 8-0 run in the final 32 seconds of the game, PG Scottie Wilbekin nailed a clutch three pointer to lift the Sixers to a victory.

Rookie Jahlil Okafor hit 25% of his shots for 12 points, going 4 from 12 on the night in what was a slightly less impressive performance compared to what we saw just two days beforehand. The rookie seemed to struggle hugely on rebounds, an issue that haunted him in College but looked a lot more settled when partnering with Noel. The two combined for 22 points on the night with Noel having a total of 15 rebounds to his name, earning him a double-double.

He may have moved position but he is still getting up there and making big plays on both sides of the court. His shooting is looking much better and it’s easy to see after two games just how much work Noel has been putting in to making his shot carry fluidity.

Canaan was once again the starting point guard but after shooting 5 for 12 in the paint and 3-8 outside, it was almost an indicator that he would be better suited at shooting guard. Canaan struggled defensively but didn’t commit a single turnover however and was able to add four assists to his name. Whilst making some impressive darts through to the rim and showing excellent penetration, he missed some easy shots including an Alley-Oop. 16 points set him alongside four other Sixers to get into double figures which was a positive.

Jerami Grant was the Sixers’ leading point scorer though with the 21 year old scoring 19 points after going 6 for 10 when shooting including a 2 for 5 record from outside the ark. Grant racked up 25 minutes and showcased his potential from the moment he step foot onto the court.

It was Lord Covington who led the team with 6 assists and also was able to put up double figures in points. Covington’s ball security has long been an issue and 5 turnovers tonight didn’t really help things, but he is picking out passes much more efficiently than what we saw last year. It’s not perfect, but RoCo is looking a lot more refined.

But after mounting a big comeback and with all other PG’s injured or Canaan…Scottie 2 Hottie came on after 46 to fire just one shot all in his 21 minute just so happened to be the clutch winning three pointer. Does this seal a spot in the roster? Not at all, but it keeps him relevant and will surely earn him more minutes in pre-season..especially after two assists and two rebounds to go with it.

T.J McConnell and McRae also had impressive games towards the end. A couple of nice jump shots from McRae and a nice driving layup gave the Sixers valuable points in the closing stages and with just ten seconds remaining, he overcame the pressure and made 2/2 from the free throw line. T.J on the other hand showed great presence all over the court, picking up rebounds..making assists and putting in work from the free throw line.

It would have been easy for the Sixers to roll over and take a beating..but on their home-opener for pre-season? No. Brett Brown inspired his men to get out there and play until the finish and that’s exactly what they did. Some aggressive shooting and rapid ball movement secured the win sending character and chemistry to an all time high amongst the young team. The Sixers are going to go down swinging in a fight that’s for just so happened that one big swing knocked out one of the leagues elite to give the Sixers a big boost before facing the Nets in two days time.