Ben Simmons Takes Over Late as Sixers Top Pacers

The Philadelphia 76ers love to make games as dramatic as possible. However, the Sixers have now won seven of their last eight.

After a first-quarter video tribute to former Sixer icon, TJ McConnell, Wells Fargo Center was sent in a seesaw of a game. In a matchup of 16 lead changes and 14 ties, despite the Sixers leading by as many as 15 early, the Sixers edged out the Pacers 119-116. On top of it all, they were without starter Josh Richardson. The Sixers stayed undefeated at Wells Fargo Center and moved to 9-0 at home.

Top Performers

Embiid: 32 PTS, 11 REB, 4 AST
Harris: 22 PTS, 4 REB, 2 AST
Simmons: 15 PTS, 13 AST, 6 REB, 4 STL
Horford: 15 PTS, 3 AST, 2 STL

Player of the Game

Joel Embiid

Joel Embiid is finally back to playing the type of basketball that put him in the MVP discussion. Post ups, getting to the line, keeping the paint modest while still shooting threes, Embiid seems back to being Joel Embiid.

He made Domantas Sabonis foul out of the game while getting to the line 15 times. Embiid made the most of it, making all 15 attempts at the stripe en route to his 33 points.

Since dropping a donut against the Raptors, Embiid has been on fire. He’s averaging 30.7 points, 14.7 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 2.0 blocks in 33.7 minutes per night.

Embiid also became the fastest player to 2000 rebounds in his 11 rebound performance, the fastest to 2000 since Tim Duncan in 1999.

Game MVP

Ben Simmons

It would be a crime to call Ben Simmons player of the game over Embiid, but Simmons won this game for the Sixers. Simmons came up with three steals in the final 13.9 seconds of the game to help seal the win in the dire last minute.

Simmons also came just four rebounds short of a triple-double, helping to showcase his well-rounded style of game. Ben even went 7-7 from the foul line to cap off his solid night.

Post-game, coach Brett Brown complimented Simmons’ ability to play a great offensive, physical game. Going into the season, Brown knew Simmons could be a defensive player of the year, and Simmons proved his coach right in this game. So far this season, he is 3rd in the NBA in deflections per game at 4.0.

His all-around performance from tonight is shown below:

Sixers’ Defense

For the back end of a back-to-back, the Sixers played very well defensively. On their end of the court, the Sixers allowed the Pacers to shoot 55.3% from the floor, however, forced the ball out of the Pacers’ hands.

The Sixers recorded 12 steals as a team and stood strong in the dying minutes of the game. Despite coach Brown grading the defensive performance (until the last seven minutes of the game, which was an “A+”) as a “C, or C-” the Sixers forced 19 Pacer turnovers.

Up Next:

The Sixers host Donovan Mitchell and the Utah Jazz Monday night at Wells Fargo Center, with tip-off scheduled for 7 p.m.

Mandatory Credit: James Lang-USA TODAY Sports

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *