The Sixers cruised to a 2-0 start on the season
Taking on the New York Knicks in the second game of the season, the Sixers took care of business. They cruised to a victory by a score of 109-89, held the Knicks to under 40% shooting from the floor, and ultimately dominated the game in essentially every statistical category possible.
It was a fantastic second outing for Daryl Morey’s new-look Sixers, and one that the team should look to build off of moving forward.
Here are my three biggest takeaways from the dominant win:
Starting five was cooking
Against the Wizards on Wednesday, the big storyline was how good the bench looked. The starters came under a bit of fire due to Danny Green and Tobias Harris struggling, and there was even some minor frustration with Seth Curry‘s shooting.
Against the Knicks – the narrative was completely flipped.
Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons, Harris, Curry, and Green combined for 82 total points – and they were specifically good when it came to closing down the game in the fourth quarter. The floor spacing was fantastic with Green, Curry, and Harris all knocking down multiple threes – making life super easy for Simmons and Embiid down by the rim.
When Morey designed this roster during the offseason, this was pretty much what he envisioned happening on a nightly basis. If this group continues to play like this each and every night, whole lotta wins should in theory follow.
Dwight Howard is quickly becoming a Sixers fan favorite
When Dwight Howard said he had embraced his role as a backup, he really wasn’t kidding. We’re only two games into his Philly career and he’s already the best backup center the Sixers have ever had during the “Joel Embiid era.”
Howard was fantastic against the Knicks. He finished the night with 9 points, 6 rebounds, a block, and a steal, and was just constantly causing chaos down low. His energy on both sides of the ball was contagious, and you could genuinely see it inspiring some of the other players on the court.
Just everything you could’ve asked for from a guy who signed the vet minimum.
Tobias Harris is still Tobias Harris!!
People were (rightfully) upset with Harris’ performance against the Wizards, but he was quick to bounce back. Harris finished with 17 points and 5 rebounds on 50% shooting and was actually a game-high +32 in the box score.
Harris is never going to “wow” you offensively, and his defense still leaves some to be desired, but he is ultimately going to settle into that consistent 16-19 PPG role.
And that’s honestly what the Sixers signed him to be.
Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire