Game Preview | Back on the Road
After sweeping a quick two-game homestand, the 76ers (7-3) are on the road once again.
Visiting the Orlando Magic (3-7) Wednesday at Amway Center, the Sixers will pursue their third straight win, on the second night of their first back-to-back of the season.
Tuesday in South Philadelphia, the Sixers gutted out a hard-fought W, earning their fifth clutch-time win of the season (no. 2 in the league).
“I think it’s good for us to experience this,” Josh Richardson (17 pts, 5 ast, 1 stl) said. “In the playoffs, when things slow down, when things get tough, we’ve got a good foundation to lean on going forward.”
Defense - particularly key stops in the game’s final few possessions - played a starring role in the win.
After gaining a five-point edge, the Cavaliers didn’t score a single bucket in the game’s final three minutes.
“We want to be the best defensive team in the league,” Furkan Korkmaz (10 pts, 4 reb, 1 ast) said. “If you want to be the best defensive team in the league, everybody needs to play really good defense, and get us stops. That’s what I’m trying to do.”
Brett Brown credited his team for the resilience its shown throughout the early goings of the season. The Sixers will end up playing nine of their first 13 games on the road.
“I do give our guys credit for not crumbling. I think that we knew if we had do do anything, we better play defense. And defense we played,” Brown said about Tuesday's victory. “I like the way that we defended, especially down the stretch.”
The Sixers announced Wednesday afternoon that Joel Embiid (injury maintenance, left knee) will not play against the Magic. Al Horford is expected to be available following Tuesday's scheduled rest game.
When the Sixers and Magic met during the preseason, the Sixers notched a commanding 126-94 victory on Orlando’s home court.
The Magic have struggled early, dropping five of their last six games. All-Star Nikola Vucevic is averaging 17.1 points and 11.5 rebounds per game. The big man has grabbed at least 16 rebounds in each of his last two appearances.
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