Boston Celtics v Philadelphia 76ers - Global Games London
LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 11: Dikembe Mutombo and Joel Embiid #21 of the Philadelphia 76ers talk prior to the start of the game against the Boston Celtics on January 11, 2018 at The O2 Arena in London, England as part of the 2018 NBA London Global Game.
Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images

Notebook | London Game Leftovers

by Brian Seltzer
Sixers.com Reporter

Redick's First Season Exceeding Expectations

Neary at the halfway point of his 12th NBA season, JJ Redick is on pace, on several fronts, to deliver a career year.

The 33-year old is averaging personal-highs in minutes per game (32.7), points per game (17.4), rebounds per game (2.7), and 3-pointers made per game (2.7). He also ranks 20th in the league with 96 threes, and is accounting for more than 3.0 assists per game (3.3) for just the second time since turning pro. 

With an elevated role on a new team serving as the backdrop, Redick spoke highly about his first campaign with the Sixers last week while the team was in London.

“I think it’s exceeded my expectations, it’s been a very fun season,” he said.

Specifically appealing to Redick was playing alongside the youthful talent base the Sixers are growing. He dubbed the club a franchise “on the rise.”

“This has been an incredible experience for me, both as a player, a teammate, and getting to know all these guys. It’s been great.”

Redick heads into Monday’s Martin Luther King Jr. Day matinee against Atlantic Division rival the Toronto Raptors with the chance to achieve a career first, which would be reaching the 20-point mark for a fifth consecutive game.

Talking Points Worth Taking Home

Stopping in England for what was literally about 76 hours, the Sixers’ adventure abroad flew by pretty quickly.

The culmination of the trip, of course, was Thursday’s NBA London Game 2018 at The O2 Arena. Despite an auspicious start that saw the Sixers race out to an impressive 22-point second quarter lead, an elusive win versus division rival Boston was not to be.

The Celtics summoned up a strong second half, and surged to a 114-103 victory.

Afterwards, Ben Simmons reflected on lessons Brett Brown wanted the Sixers to extract from the contest.

“Coach always says we just got to stay together, play as one, and trust in each other,” said the rookie point man, who scored 16 points versus the Cs. “From now is how we got to play. We’re upset tonight...but I think we can get back on track.”

From start to finish, between seeing historic sites to representing the Sixers on a prominent international stage, Simmons seemed to value the experience. He called the London Game a “great event” put on by the NBA, and said he had a lot of fun.

“I had a great time here. I love London so far, definitely one of the best places I’ve been in my life. On the court, you play a great team in Boston - well-coached, great vets, they know how to play the game the right way, and they’re a tough team.

“Obviously, it wasn’t the result we wanted. Now we go back to the States and try to get better.”

Embiid Sets Sights on More Games Overseas in Future

Play additional games on the international stage in the future?

Joel Embiid hopes the Sixers do.

Should these types of assignments arise, the big man wants to make sure he, and his teammates, come back home with a more favorable outcome than they did in London.

“I’m international, so for me to come here, I appreciate these types of moments,” Embiid said Thursday. “I feel like it’s a great opportunity, and the past couple days I’ve been here, I had a lot of fun. I was here this summer, I loved it. I hope in the future we get an opportunity to come back for another game, so we can have a better one and win the game.”

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