First Meeting with the Clippers

by Lauren Rosen

The 76ers’ (33-21) final game before the All-Star break brings a matchup with one of the league’s best, the LA Clippers (37-16).

Tuesday’s meeting will be the first between the teams this season, and the first time the Sixers face a Clipper team featuring Kawhi Leonard and Paul George, both of whom joined LA in the offseason.

The Sixers, who still hold the best home record in the NBA (24-2), are embracing Tuesday’s challenge.

“They’ve got a lot of talent, a lot of depth, and they play very hard,” Ben Simmons said of the Clippers at Monday’s practice. “It’s going to be a tough challenge, but we love competing against the best.”

Tobias Harris echoed those sentiments as he prepares to face his own former team for the first time since joining the Sixers at the trade deadline last season. 

He’s “excited for the challenge.”

“We’re playing against one of the best in the West, so we need to continue to grow our game, and see where we’re at,” Harris said.

A couple noteworthy additions highlighted Monday’s practice, as Alec Burks and Glenn Robinson III practiced with their new team for the first time.

Matisse Thybulle - no longer the new guy - enjoyed helping acclimate his new teammates.

“I know what they’re going through, because coming in, I didn’t know anyone, I didn’t know any of the plays,” Thybulle said. “It’s cool, I can try to help them in any way I can - now that I know some things.”

Robinson played his first 12 minutes for the Sixers this season during Sunday’s win over the Bulls, scoring 10 points, on 5-of-6 shooting.

“A lot of his cuts were just second nature for him,” Harris said of Robinson. “He’s a dynamic player, brings a great skillset to our team. I thought he was great for us, I think he’s going to be a great part of our team too going forward."

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

Opponent Outlook:

The Clippers have won four of their last six, splitting a back-to-back against the Timberwolves and Cavaliers to open their road trip.

Reigning Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard has consistently impressed in his first 40 games as a Clipper, averaging 27.1 points, 7.5 rebounds, 5.2 assists, and 1.9 steals per game, scoring in double-digits in all 40 games.

Follow Along:

Watch: TNT

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