Dropped Spurs

By: Kylan Watson

The Philadelphia 76ers started their three-game road trip off in San Antonio as they faced the young and hungry Spurs. The Sixers lost to the Spurs earlier this season in Philadelphia, and they are arguably a better team than they were in October. The last time they saw the Spurs and they proved it tonight as they dropped the Spurs 137-125.

Philly started this game off slow, they could not hit a shot early in this game and the Spurs took full advantage of their inability to get back on defense and forced Doc Rivers to take a quick timeout to get his team together. After that timeout the Sixers regained their form and did not look back as they dominated the Spurs on both sides of the court. They were led by the trio of Joel Embiid (33-points, grabbed eight rebounds, and had four assists), Tyrese Maxey (25-points), and James Harden (14-points, had eight assists, and hit two three-pointers). The Spurs had no answers for them especially Embiid who continued his dominance into February as he crushed San Antonio from all sides of the court and kept the Sixers in front. He has continued to anchor the Sixers on the defensive end when there have been breakdowns and that has kept them in front in games that would have gotten away from them last year. If this continues the Sixers will be a force in the postseason.

James Harden’s numbers might not show it tonight but he has continued to return to form after missing 16 games because of a foot injury. The underrated part of his game that has not been talked about enough this season. Is his improvement in hitting catch and shoot three-pointers, he hit two tonight and has been improving in that department throughout the season. If he continues to become a deadeye from beyond the arc without taking a dribble that could make the Sixers even more dangerous from the three-point line. Last year Harden would take an extra dribble instead of shooting, now he takes them and that has helped the Sixers rocket up the standings in the loaded Eastern Conference.

The Spurs continued to fight in tonight’s contest they were run off the floor, but continued to try to make this a contest. They were led by the duo of Malakai Branham (26-points) and Keldon Johnson (18-points), they combined for 44 of the Spurs’ 125-points.  Both of them gave Philly fits on the defensive end. When the Sixers gave them any room to attack the paint they would, and it got them in early foul trouble. However, they were able to turn up the defensive pressure on San Antonio and force them into turnovers and that was what kept them in front tonight. Other than Johnson and Branham they were able to make the Spurs a jump shooting team like they did to the Magic. If they can get more consistent defensive performances like they did against the Spurs and the Magic, they can be one of the deadliest defensive teams in the league.

The Sixers now will prepare to face the New York Knicks on Sunday night, they will need to make sure they bring the defensive intensity to limit Jalen Brunson and Julius Randle. Additionally, they will need to keep the ball moving and take the highest percentage shot they can find. That continues to be the best weapon they have on the offensive end despite having James Harden and Joel Embiid in the line-up. They also need to avoid looking ahead to a Wednesday night matchup in Boston because if they overlook the Knicks they could lose this game, but if they stay focused, they can get their 35th victory of the season on Sunday night.

One thought on “Dropped Spurs

Agree or disagree let your thoughts be heard!!!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.