By: Kylan Watson
The Philadelphia 76ers were riding high after beating the Toronto Raptors on Tuesday night. They faced the Brooklyn Nets for the third time this season. They were desperate to get their first win of the season against Brooklyn. It showed on the court as they used a fourth quarter offensive explosion to beat the Nets 110-102.
The Sixers jumped on the Nets early as they were hitting their shots and forcing Brooklyn into some early mistakes. Before Brooklyn could get settled, they were down by eight early in the first quarter. Joel Embiid tortured the Nets defenders as he was hitting shots from all over the court. He scored 16 of his 34-points by the end of the first quarter. Embiid looks like he is rounding into form after missing time battling Covid-19. If he is rounding into form and that might be a problem for the rest of the league.
Despite the offensive explosion from Embiid. The Nets weathered the early storm and were able to retake the lead early in the second quarter. Kevin Durant made Philly pay for daring to give him space from the perimeter. It did not matter who the Sixers put on him. He put that defender in the blender and at times Philly had no answers for him. He scored 33-points and led the Nets on a third quarter scoring explosion that gave them a seven-point lead.
When it looked like Philly would go down Tyrese Maxey (25-points) and Georges Niang (9-points) refused to let the Sixers fold. They combined for 34-points, and both hit a couple of late game three-pointers down the stretch to help put the Nets away. The return of Niang has given the bench some life in the past three games and it has continued to pay off. The bench has been having its best stretch of games this season and with the return of Andre Drummond and Shake Milton it only stands to benefit more. The bench continuing to play well will allow Joel Embiid, Seth Curry, and Tobias Harris to stay fresh.
On Tyrese Maxey’s performance, “”Tyrese is not afraid, and that’s huge. He’s got a big heart, and a lot of guts, and he’s coming along,” said Sixers Acting Head Coach Dan Burke.
Philly will now get a few days off as they prepare for the Houston Rockets, and they will need to have another balanced scoring night and having another great perimeter defensive night to stifle the backcourt of the Rockets. If they want their 20th win of the season.
On the win, “Last game, Joel told me I was trash… I told him I got him this game. So I just went out here, and tried my hardest for my teammates,” said Maxey.