In the Bonus | 1.18.18 vs Celtics
The following notes and nuggets were taken from the 76ers’ January 18th 89-80 win over the Boston Celtics.
Click here for a complete recap of the game, and be sure to check out our post-game pod below:
In the Bonus:
• Thursday’s 89-80 victory over the Boston Celtics’ marked the Sixers’ first at TD Garden since April 4th, 2014, one of the final games of Brett Brown’s and Brett Stevens’ respective rookie head coaching seasons. As for the rosters that night, in the Sixers’ 111-102 triumph? Certainly different than what both teams have now. Take a look:
• The Sixers needed a few minutes to find their form Thursday. But after beginning the game 0 for 7 from the field, they recovered to hit their next four shots, en route to a 21-19 advantage through 12 minutes of play.
• Earlier this week, Brett Brown indicated that in JJ Redick’s absence, Jerryd Bayless, Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot, and Justin Anderson might all be in line for increased minutes. How did things shake out Thursday, the Sixers’ first game since Redick (left leg) got hurt? Bayless received the starting two-guard nod, and posted 4 points (2-5), 2 rebounds, 2 assists, and a plus-8 rating in 25 minutes. Luwawu-Cabarrot went 0 for 3 from the field in three minutes. Anderson, in 16 minutes off the bench, provided stretches of solid defensive energy, and hit a 3-pointer, too. The Sixers outscored Boston by 7 points with Anderson on the floor.
• Down the stretch of Thursday’s first quarter, Boston appeared to be gaining control, but reserve forward Trevor Booker assumed a noteworthy role in helping the Sixers turn the tables. In the span of 78 seconds, he deposited three quick interior baskets, with Joel Embiid assisting on the first and third field goals in the sequence. Booker’s swift 6 points transformed a 4-point deficit into a 1-point lead.
• To no surprise, part of Boston’s defensive gameplan Thursday was to do its darndest to keep Joel Embiid out of the paint, and at the start of the tilt, that’s precisely what the Celtics did. The freshly-named All-Star’s first three shot attempts - all misses - came from distances of 18, 24, and 16 feet, while his first three made shots were from 8, 10, and 17 feet. Midway through the third period, Embiid finally got his first close-range basket to fall. The two-footer shown below was just one of two baskets he scored inside of 5 feet. Nonetheless, Embiid delivered big, high-impact numbers. He cranked out a game-high 26 points, going 7 for 12 from 7 feet out or farther.
• The Sixers’ first-half defensive activity helped them seize control of Thursday’s game. They had turned Boston over 15 times midway through the second quarter, relying on resulting transition scoring opportunities to open up a double-digit lead for the first time. The Celtics’ 19 turnovers Thursday matched a season-high originally set on October 20th, the first meeting of the year between the Atlantic Division foes.
“They turn people over,” said Brad Stevens. “They certainly made us look poor.”
Also, the other head coach involved in tonight's game, Brad Stevens, had some things to say about the Sixers, too: — Brian Seltzer (@brianseltzer) January 19, 2018
"Out of the last two games we’ve played against Philadelphia – six out of eight quarters...we’ve been dominated. "
Also, the other head coach involved in tonight's game, Brad Stevens, had some things to say about the Sixers, too:
— Brian Seltzer (@brianseltzer) January 19, 2018
• Thursday’s halftime score was Sixers 39, Boston 30. The figures represented the lowest first-half scoring totals of the season for both clubs.
• Joel Embiid’s passing was on-point Thursday, particularly in the final minutes of the third quarter, when he handed out three helpers to TJ McConnell. This one was the first, and featured not only great touch, but excellent double-team recognition.
• In the third quarter, Joel Embiid and T.J. McConnell provided pivotal contributions that allowed the Sixers to keep momentum on their side. During one stretch, they teamed up to produce 24 points in a row for the team.