Sunday, October 6, Noon (EST) at Biskaia Exhibition Centre, Bilbao, Spain
by Max Rappaport, Sixers.com
Posted: October 7, 2013
In Brett Brown’s first game as the head coach of the Philadelphia 76ers, his team pushed the pace early and often and forced Bilbao Basket’s defense to face odd-man attacks in transition. The result was 17 free-throw attempts and a 27-20 lead for the Sixers after the first quarter.
That lead would later be pushed as high as 14 early in the second quarter before Bilbao went on a 10-2 run to cut their deficit to six. From that point on, the lead changed hands 14 times, but Philadelphia was able to hold on for a 106-104 victory.
With the Sixers up 104-101 and just 6.3 seconds left in regulation, Bilbao point guard Raül López was able to find an open German Gabriel at the top of the arc. Gabriel, who was 1-for-5 from deep up to that point in the game, elevated over a defending Thaddeus Young. Unfortunately, Young fouled the Bilbao forward, who was awarded three free throws and a chance to tie the game. He made all three, and the Sixers called a timeout to advance the ball to half court.
Swingman Evan Turner inbounded to Spencer Hawes, who was promptly swarmed by a pair of Bilbao defenders. A foul sent the Sixers center the free-throw line with 4.8 seconds remaining; he converted both free throws to give Philadelphia a 106-104 lead. Bilbao called a timeout to advance the ball and draw up one final play. They were able to get the ball into the hands of Raül Lopez, who created enough space to get off a clean jump shot, but his attempt fell short.
Stat of the Night
The Sixers got to the free-throw line 46 times against Bilbao. Evan Turner and Tony Wroten each did so 12 times, with Wroten accomplishing the feat in just 24 minutes of play; both players converted 10 of their attempts.
Quote of the Night
"The positive sign is that we have young guys that want to be coached... When you're with them in battle, and you're looking at them, you feel like it's a group that can stay together through some hard patches and continue to improve." – Brett Brown