The 76ers (23-15) will visit the Detroit Pistons (11-31) Sunday, marking the second of three meetings between the two teams this season. The third and final matchup will come Tuesday, as the Pistons visit the Sixers for the second half of the home-and-home set.
The Sixers took their first meeting with the Pistons, a 113-93 victory in South Philadelphia on Dec. 21.
Joel Embiid led the way for the Sixers in that win, recording a 22-point, 10-rebound double-double, plus six assists and four blocks. Embiid (left foot soreness) has missed the team’s last two games - a 129-126 overtime victory over the Pacers Wednesday, and a 126-112 loss to the Bulls Friday.
Embiid and P.J. Tucker (non-COVID illness) are out for Sunday’s matchup.
The Pistons are 3-7 in their last 10 games, most recently falling to the San Antonio Spurs, 121-109, Friday in San Antonio.
Bojan Bogdanovic leads Detroit in scoring this season, averaging 21.0 points per game. Jalen Duren leads the team in rebounding (8.5 rpg), while Killian Hayes leads the group in assists (5.5 apg) and steals (1.2 spg).
After starting the season averaging 19.9 points, 6.2 rebounds, and 6.0 assists per game in his first 12 appearances, Detroit’s Cade Cunningham is expected to miss the remainder of the season (left shin surgery).
In the Sixers’ most recent appearance versus Chicago, the Sixers struggled to overcome the Bulls’ hot shooting night (57.1% fg, 58.8% 3fg), headlined by Zach LaVine’s 41-point outing (11-13 3fg).
Tyrese Maxey’s strong showing (26 pts, 5-7 3fg) in just his fourth game back from injury (left foot fracture) was a silver lining.
“[Tyrese’s shooting is] coming back - you can see it,” Doc Rivers said postgame. “It's back to me… I think his shot sets up everything else for him. So I think he is good to go.”
“I think I had to get back acclimated to the speed of the game,” Maxey said. “It’s hard - I’ve never missed this much time and then came back. It’s difficult, but it’s a beautiful thing to be back out there with my teammates, trying to help them win games.”
Sunday’s matinee is a 3:00 p.m. ET start.
Friday’s Standout Performances:
- Maxey finished with a team-high 26 points, plus three rebounds, six assists, and a steal. He shot 8-for-15 overall, 5-for-7 from deep, and 5-for-6 from the free throw line, finishing at a team-high +1 in his 37 minutes of play.
- Harris notched a 22-point, 11-rebound double-double, plus an assist, a steal, and a block in his team-high 38 minutes.
- Harden neared a triple-double, recording 17 points, seven rebounds, 11 assists, and a steal.
- Harrell finished with a bench-high 17 points, shooting 8-for-12 overall, plus four rebounds and a steal.
Quote to Note:
Tyrese Maxey on Tobias Harris’ consistency:
“He’s a professional. He’s a pro’s pro. He comes to work every single day, does exactly what the coaching staff asks him to do every single night. He doesn’t complain, it doesn’t matter who’s on the court, he’s going to step out. He’s going to go out there and be himself. He’s been huge for us.”