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During their three-game win streak, the Cavaliers have had no shortage of heroes – and that was the case again on Saturday night in Philly.
From Collin Sexton to Dean Wade to Darius Garland to Damyean Dotson, the Wine & Gold gutted one out – dropping the Conference-leading Sixers for the second time this season with a 112-109 overtime decision.
Garland’s game was a perfect snapshot of the Cavaliers’ effort – struggling through the first four quarters of a slugfest before exploding in overtime, netting 11 of his 25 points in the extra session. In the OT, the sophomore guard was 3-of-4 from the floor and 5-of-6 from the stripe.
The Cavaliers led almost the entire night, fighting off a late Sixers’ push in regulation and pulling away in overtime – running off their third consecutive win on the heels of a 10-game losing streak.
Cleveland also fought off a monster night from All-Star big man Joel Embiid, who led both teams with 42 points and 13 rebounds.
But while the Sixers didn’t get much besides Embiid’s big night and a 24-point effort from Ben Simmons, the Cavs got contributions across their lineup.
Collin Sexton led Cleveland with 28 points, going 11-for-27 from the floor to go with five boards, three assists and three steals.
Isaac Okoro notched a career-high 15 points, going 6-of-9 from the floor to go with eight boards, three assists and three steals before fouling out early in overtime.
Jarrett Allen doubled-up for the seventh straight game, finishing with 14 points and 10 boards.
Dean Wade, inserted into the starting lineup to start the three-game win streak, grabbed a career-best 12 rebounds to go with six points in the win.
Saturday’s overtime win wasn’t a thing of beauty for either team. The Cavs shot 42 percent from the floor and scored just 36 points in the final two quarters of regulation. But Cleveland did the dirty work and hit the shots that counted – piling up 62 points in the paint and going 5-of-9 from the floor and 10-of-13 from the stripe in overtime.
Miss any of the action? Find all the highlights and photos in the Game Tracker.
Isaac Okoro gets out in the open floor, breaks out a Euro-step to get around his defender and scores through contact for an and-one opportunity.
You could say Saturday’s turning point was that there wasn’t a turning point.
The Cavaliers led through almost the entire first half, running their lead to 13 points in the second quarter. In the third, the Sixers continued to chip away at the lead but never took it – with Collin Sexton’s layup at the end of the period giving Cleveland a two-point edge.
Instead of folding against the best home team in the East, the Cavaliers stood their ground in the fourth – a period that featured three ties and eight lead-changes – and took control in overtime.
By the Numbers - 8 … straight games that Collin Sexton has topped the 20-point mark, averaging 25.0ppg on .477 shooting from the floor and .788 from the stripe over that stretch.
Sexton started this season with 10 straight games of 20-plus after doing so in the last five outings of last year – and has now reached that mark in 83 of his 175 career games.
"We know what we can do. We’re all confident in ourselves. We know we should have a better record. Now it’s just time to string wins along. At the end of the day, they tie their shoes up just like us, they go out there and play. And no matter what, when we go to battle and we do what we have to do, I feel like we’re capable of beating anybody."
Enjoy the best broadcast calls of the night from Cavaliers Radio Network's Tim Alcorn and Rafa Hernandez-Brito from Power 89.1.
The Cavaliers have just two more games remaining before the Break – one more on the road, facing off against the Rockets in Houston on Monday, and a final contest at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, welcoming the Pacers on Wednesday.
Cleveland opens the second half with three straight on the road – beginning with a March 12 matchup against Zion Williamson and the Pelicans in New Orleans.