76ers Visit Heat for Night Two of Back-to-Back

The 76ers (39-23) are in Miami for the second night of their back-to-back, set to take on the Heat (42-22) for a battle between the two top teams in the Eastern Conference.

Friday’s back-to-back opener - the 76ers’ fifth consecutive victory - featured a 21-point comeback win, highlighted by balanced performances and overall efficiency.

Tyrese Maxey scored a game-high 33 points, plus four rebounds, five assists, two steals, and a block. Maxey shot 10-for-15 from the field, 5-for-6 from 3-point range, and 8-for-9 from the charity stripe.

“He’s a fearless kid,” Doc Rivers said of Maxey postgame. “He’s playing great. He’s getting great shots.”

James Harden notched a 25-point, 11-assist double-double, plus three rebounds and a steal, while Joel Embiid totalled 22 points, nine rebounds, five assists, and two steals. Tobias Harris added 15 points, four rebounds, an assist, and a steal.

The team shot 57.4% from the field (41-75 fg), 42.4% from deep (14-33 3fg), and 90.6% from the foul line (29-32 FT).

Georges Niang led the way for the bench unit, finishing with 17 points on 6-for-9 shooting from the field and 5-for-8 shooting from long range.

“I always tell him I love him because he plays with that emotion on his sleeve,” Maxey said of Niang. “You need guys with that passion.”

Shake Milton added 11 points and four boards, shooting 4-for-6 from the field and 2-for-3 from deep.

In the most recent meeting between the Sixers and Heat on Jan. 15, the Sixers took a 109-98 victory in Miami.

Embiid led the way in the win, recording a 32-point, 12-rebound double-double, plus three assists, a steal, and a block. Harris added 22 points, eight rebounds, three assists, and a block.

The Heat occupy the No. 1 seed in the East, 2.0 games ahead of the Sixers, who lead the Bucks (39-25) by 1.0 game.

Saturday’s matchup tips at 8:00 p.m. ET.

Opponent Outlook:

The Heat have won five of their last six, most recently beating the Nets, 113-107, Thursday in Brooklyn.

Bam Adebayo was the Heat’s leading scorer Thursday, notching a 30-point, 11-rebound double-double. Tyler Herro scored 27 points off the bench, plus four rebounds, eight assists, and a steal.

Jimmy Butler (left big toe irritation), Caleb Martin (left achilles soreness), Max Strus (right shoulder sprain) and P.J. Tucker (left knee pain) are questionable Saturday. Kyle Lowry (personal reasons), Markieff Morris (return to competition reconditioning), and Victor Oladipo (right knee injury recovery) are out.

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