From Deep, Team is Proving Dangerous

by Lauren Rosen

After a 115-109 win Thursday in Boston to kick off another back-to-back, the 76ers return home to host JJ Redick and the New Orleans Pelicans (6-19).

Much was made of Redick’s offseason departure, and rightfully so - the 35-year-old remains one of the most lethal shooters in the game.

But the Sixers have so far this season excelled from beyond the arc, converting 37.1% of their 3-point field goal attempts,, the sixth-highest clip in the league.

For context, the Sixers shot 35.9% from deep last season. 

Over the past month, the team’s long range accuracy has only improved, as the Sixers lead the league in 3-point percentage (40.4%) since Nov. 15.

Tobias Harris credits this success to the Sixers finding new ways to generate quality 3-point looks. 

“We’re getting different threes, different looks, a lot of drive-and-kicks,” Harris said. “Our threes are more coming off double-teams, and penetration, whereas last year, with a guy like JJ, the way he shoots and how good he is, is coming off pin-downs and curls at the top of the key. They’re just different looks, and we’re able to get comfortable with those and capitalize off of those.”

Brett Brown believes spacing has had a lot to do with the Sixers' accuracy from deep. 

“They occupy those floor spots lately quite well. I think with that space, you get into the fundamentals of footwork, and receiving balls, and delivering passes where shooters don’t have to reach,” Brown said Thursday, after the Sixers sunk 14 of 28 perimeter tries in Boston. 

“The pieces connect, I think the spacing is the thing that brings it all together, and I hope it breeds confident to let these guys continue to shoot the ball.”

This season, Josh Richardson leads the team in 3-point attempts (4.9 attempts per game), and has seen shots fall at a 39.3% rate.

The Sixers' bench has been particularly dangerous from beyond the arc. Raul Neto leads the team shooting 48.3% from three. Matisse Thybulle has converted 46.6% of his threes, and James Ennis III has nailed 40.4%.

Friday’s contest tips at 7:00 p.m. ET.

Opponent Outlook:

The Pelicans have lost nine in a row leading into their first and only visit to South Philadelphia this season.

After losing 2019 first overall pick Zion Williamson (knee) for the beginning portion of the season, Brandon Ingram has taken over as an offensive leader for New Orleans, averaging 24.9 points per game and shooting 49.0% from the field. Ingram also leads the Pelicans in rebounding, averaging 7.1 boards per game.

Redick continues to shoot well, averaging 44.8% from long range.

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