By: Kylan Watson
The Philadelphia 76ers are trying to build more momentum after almost falling to the Los Angeles Lakers on Friday night. They faced a game Charlotte Hornets squad, that wanted to take full advantage of a team that makes a lot of dumb mistakes. The Sixers were able to keep the mistakes to a minimum tonight. They drowned the Hornets from three-point range and beat them 131-113.
Both teams started off colder than a freezer from the field, they were missing easy buckets and could not get their rhythm together. The Hornets were able to get their shots to fall first as they took advantage of some early turnovers from the Sixers to get out to an eight-point lead early in the first quarter. Terry Rozier and Kelly Oubre led them as they combined for 58 of the Hornets’ 113-points. The Sixers could not stop them as they got whatever they wanted from the field. Their athleticism allowed them to get to the bucket with ease and get the Sixers defenders in foul trouble.
Philly was able to weather the offensive barrage from the Hornets and in the third quarter they came alive and dominated the Hornets. Joel Embiid led them he scored 38 of the Sixers 72 second half points. By the end of the game, he had 53-points and grabbed 12-rebounds, he refused to let his team lose another game to the Hornets. Embiid did not face many double teams tonight and that was a pivotal blunder by the Hornets. That helped the Sixers pull away late in the game and when they did double team him. De’Anthony Melton got the ball in the corner and hit four three-pointers to keep Philly ahead. Melton has been proving that he may be the best acquisition the Sixers made this offseason. He always finds himself around the ball. He and Embiid have helped the Sixers extend their win streak to two games. Philly continues to get healthier and once they are at full strength, Philly should be one of the best teams in the league. They just need to stop beating themselves with the self-enforced errors.
They now will prepare to face the Sacramento Kings on Tuesday night. Sacramento is another young athletic team with a young and athletic backcourt that will give them fits if they are loose with the ball or miss their assignments on the defensive end. They will need to keep the ball moving on the offensive end, and stay attached to their man on the defensive end if they want to get their 15th win of the season.