The Sixers’ five likes and dislikes in their second victory over the Atlanta Hawks


On a rainy Tuesday night, Philadelphia’s victory over the Atlanta Hawks in Game 2 felt inevitable. Franchise legend Julius Owen sounded the alarm, the 76ers started the game with full firepower, and Tre Young was successfully controlled. Wells Fargo Center is crumbling. Later, the Atlanta bench boiled in the first half, and the tension was obvious. The 76ers were caught in a tense battle and tried to ensure that they would not fall behind 2-0.

It turns out that having Joel Embiid on your list will help you get through a moment like this. In a superb performance, perhaps his best performance in the playoffs so far, Embiid put Philadelphia on his back for long enough for the Cavaliers to arrive.

That’s where we started the day after the game.

Like: Joel Embiid, manga superhero

Many months ago, Rivers was a deep guard for the San Antonio team led by Hall of Famer David Robinson and spent his last season (1994-95) with the league MVP.That year was already notorious for the Spurs (and Robinson) because That MVP trophy-Robinson won this award in front of Houston’s Hakim Olajuwon, who defeated Robinson in the Western Conference Finals and won the second consecutive championship.

“Tonight, you think it’s Joel,” Rivers said with a smile Tuesday night. “He’s just that great.”

In the classic Embiid way, he managed to express his disappointment at the loss of the league’s MVP award at the same press conference and denied its importance. He never shy away from telling people what he wants to accomplish, and his self-worth only grows during the best season of his career. But his move was the loudest on Tuesday, when Embiid put together an absolutely classic performance to level the entire series.

Gone are the days when double-teaming and pressure defense were enough to disrupt his night. Throughout the night, the Eagles tried to seek help in his direction to help poor Clint Capela (Clint Capela), who spent most of the night in foul trouble. Suddenly, the threat of Embiid’s pass forced Atlanta to reconsider sending help, and those moments of hesitation provided enough space for the big man to shoot.

There were a lot of doubles shots on Tuesday night. Who can blame this guy? These Eagles have no answer to Embiid. Despite the torn meniscus, Embiid averaged 39.5 points per game in the first two games. In the past, Embiid did not completely languish in the playoffs, but this is uncharted territory for him. This is the type of output that many people dream of when they started to rebuild the team in 2013.

Frankly speaking, his defense on Tuesday may have been even more impressive, and when a man scored 40 points on 25 shots, it said something. Embiid is currently fully entitled to limit defensively, take care of injuries and bear a huge burden on offense. But he is as clear as anyone that the stakes are growing, and he is now more demanding than ever.

All the defensive adjustments, all the compliments came from the way Ben Simmons played Trae Young’s night. Without the big man anchoring everything from the back end, nothing would work. When he turned the corner in the pick-and-roll, he showed Young a brick wall and still managed to break or block most of the night’s lob attempts against Clint Capela.

“In terms of pursuit, we do better as a team, you know, no matter who chooses,” Embiid said after the game. “I’m also playing this game. You can call the cat and the mouse and pretend to go back, just wanting them to guess. Sometimes you will get it, sometimes you won’t get it, you just want to use my length to make It is as hard as possible.”

“Tonight, you just saw his dominance as a player. I think on the defensive end, he is the key to us disrupting their pick-and-rolls,” Tobias Harris added. “When you get 40 and 13 points on the field and play the way he plays, it’s a huge effort.”

He has not been rated as the league’s most valuable player. If he avoids injury in the best season so far, it is impossible for him to defeat Nikola Jokic. But Embiid’s eyes are trained on larger goals, which may allow him to take home a different type of MVP award.

“I have to come out every year, get ready and do my job,” Embiid said on Tuesday, reflecting on the second place in the MVP. “I focus on the playoffs, I focus on winning the championship. As I have been saying all season, we have a good chance, so I don’t worry, you know, those awards and things. If and when I hold At the time of the trophy, nothing else matters.”

Like: Shake Milton, lifelike

At 10 p.m. the day before the second game, Shake Milton played an extra round of one-on-one basketball games at the Philadelphia training ground. In the hours before the 76ers played on Tuesday, Doc Rivers and Joel Embiid both had a conversation, reminding him to be prepared. Has any psychic visited the 76ers locker room or something?

In any case, the visits of his coach and team MVP proved to be prescient. Milton was thrown back into the rotation, triggering a lifeless second team. He was absolutely sensational. He made four three-pointers in just 14 minutes and was wobbly with the game pending.

“I am very happy for him,” Harris said Tuesday night. “I think this really shows the significance of the playoffs. Every game is important, so you never know who can come forward, but when you get the players who come forward and play like him, they put in a lot of effort. Time, it will only push us further forward.”

Milton’s outburst completely went against the progress of the game. The Philadelphia team maintained a one-point lead and stared at the Atlanta bench, who defeated them 32-0 in the first 24 minutes of the game. Rivers desperately wanted a change. Instead of watching Tyrese Maxey, George Hill or Furkan Korkmaz continue to hit the wall with his head, he called the man who was asked to serve as the second unit for most of the year. When he was replaced, Milton won a standing ovation, and the Wells Fargo Center wavered in ecstasy as he kept hitting the ball.

Performance like the one we saw from Milton not only made the playoffs exciting, but first made sports worth watching. Heroes appear when you least expect them, players overcome adversity in stressful moments, and the resilience of the human spirit is tested in front of millions of viewers. From Milton’s night of hell, he is likely to return to the rotation in the third game.

Dislike: the first 24 minutes of the bench

I don’t remember the last time I saw the bench lead 32-0 in the 76ers halftime game on Tuesday night. Milton’s performance felt as spectacular as it was because of how terrible the situation was when he was forced to take action. Atlanta’s bench has a lot of firepower, but they are not so good that they should be blown up like this.

Rivers didn’t leave them without help. Tobias Harris was drawn to the middle of the heater in the first quarter in order to diversify Philadelphia’s resources a bit. This move only slowed Harris, and did not play a role in improving the bench. This is not to say that it was wrong to stagger their stars in the end, but even if Rivers tried to help them, the Phillies got the best of both worlds, which is frustrating.

I don’t need to show you multiple clips of Furkan Korkmaz balloons. I just want to say that they need to get better on the rest of the road. Hope Milton let them get there.

Like: Adjusting Trae Young’s plan

When Ben Simmons caught Tre Young on the first defensive possession of the game, the 76ers effectively issued a statement of intent. Young no longer travels to the paint easily, no longer gains a speed advantage in the game with Danny Green, and no longer plays the most important role in the Philadelphia game.

However, Simmons is only part of the Philadelphia formula-Matisse Sebull actually did a great job against Young, forcing him to shoot 2/6 from the field (admittedly, there are some tough fouls), and The shooting percentage against Simmons was 2/5. The plan is the big winner of the second game.

The 76ers did not allow Yang to play an active role in the corner, but made more transition defenses early in the game, sending the first defensive player in the Atlanta double to Yang.

Rivers said after the game: “I think the early conversion is good, I think it allowed them to get rid of their 77 and double drag most of the time.” “Trey wants to go downhill, we want to replace him. , This will at least make them flat. Even if he beats our players, it will give us time to adjust and be in our position of help… I think this has some impact on us .”

Compared to the first game, almost everyone on Tuesday night had more success defending Yang. Seth Curry and Danny Green were the two worst defenders on the field in the second game, but they executed the opening of the game perfectly. When Yang turned around, when the ball was knocked down, he Is staring at the defense that is ready for every result. Embiid is patrolling the penalty area, Harris is preparing to rendezvous with Young near the free throw line, Simmons is blocking the pass to the corner, which makes Atlanta’s point guard less and less choices.

It turns out that refusing to give up space is the right way to fight one of the most dangerous pick-and-roll guards in the league. Young missed some three-pointers that he might want to come back, but this often happens when you force someone to actively work for their scoring instead of letting them start the game with open shots one by one.

The 76ers are expecting a more aggressive young man in the third game. But if their execution is so clear, it may not matter.

Dislike: The Danny Green series had a difficult start

In this beat, you may not find anyone who supports Danny Green more than me, but he performed very badly in the first two games of this series. Not being able to check Young is one thing, it’s the kind of task he has struggled with throughout the season, but Green’s mental error last night is inappropriate for a player who has made a career by doing the right little things.

This is the disadvantage of the green experience. When he performs poorly, you are sure that he will never do the ball well again, because Green’s shooting errors are serious and his defensive errors are creepy. As an excellent off-the-ball tracker, Green couldn’t even do this in the second game:

He just has to be better.


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