What are they talking about: Joel Embiid’s motives, the “process” in the trial and Damian Lillard to the 76ers?
The last time the 76ers advanced to the second round of the playoffs was 20 years ago. After recovering from a shocking defeat and starting their Eastern Conference semifinal series against the Atlanta Hawks, after Joel Embiid’s outstanding performance and some other killer performances, the 76ers made a big show on Tuesday night. Equalized the score with a score of 1-1.
Philadelphia now needs to win three of the next five games, and at least one in Atlanta, if they want a chance to play against (we assume) a formidable Brooklyn Nets in the Eastern Conference Finals.
But we are surpassing ourselves. As the 76ers try to justify the “process”, some very interesting basketball is being staged, and as the third game in Atlanta on Friday approaches, all eyes are on them. This is where we will begin our latest issue of “What Are They Talking About” on the 76ers:
Derek Parker | Sports Illustrated
For the 76ers, this playoff is not just an in-depth playoff game, there are more at stake. Teams like the Rockets and the Thunder are actively cancelling their seasons, and people are very interested in whether Sam Sinki’s vision will be reflected in winning the championship for Philadelphia. If they succeed, tanks will become a more common part of the NBA every year.
Fast forward a few years after a lot of garbage and player exchanges. The 76ers now have MVP and DPOY runners-up, a solid core of role players, and three victories before the Eastern Conference finals.
OKC has a main focus.
Philadelphia’s first-round picks shot less than 50%, but they still built a competitive team. If any or all of Okafor, Fultz, or sixth overall pick Noel are eliminated, we may see the mid-term of Philadelphia’s long-term championship.
Oklahoma City will soon find itself in a similar situation. If it ends with a higher success rate than the 76ers in the draft, it may enter the championship battle earlier than expected. [SI.com]
Kevin McCormick | Sports Illustrated
Before we dive into the actual players on the 76ers roster, it seems that Philadelphia cannot avoid being included in every rumor. In every major sportWith the Trail Blazers exiting the playoffs early, some people wonder if Damian Lillard will want to return to Portland. Obviously, without much consideration of their ability to bring him in, the sports betting company predicts that if Dame moves, Philadelphia will join it. Well…
Although there are no official reports about the team buying Lillard or his desire to leave, the betting odds on who his next team might be have been opened. Among the current favorites of BetOnline.ag, the 76ers are second in odds.
The New York Knicks currently have the best odds of +250, but the 76ers are close behind at +275. Other favored teams include the Heat, Celtics, Lakers and Clippers.
With Daryl Morey now in charge of the 76ers front desk, these odds seem to be based on reputation. Morey never avoids big moves. If Lillard is free, he will definitely look around.
It is also worth noting that the 76ers were one of the last teams to participate in the negotiations between James Harden and Kyle Lowry.
The 76ers still find themselves in the middle of the playoffs. It’s too early to talk about offseason trading. Having said that, the 76ers are one of Lillard’s most potential footholds, which is still quite fascinating. [SI.com]
Dan Devine | ring
Alright, enough. In the two games of this series, Joel Embiid scored 79 points and a ridiculous 0.708 true shooting percentage with a partially torn meniscus. We will discuss in a second whether this is one of the most impressive performances in NBA history, but it is undeniable that Embiid has the focus and motivation to do everything he can to help the 76ers win. Was it because he played fewer games than Nikola Jokic this season and was overlooked as the MVP?
This is Embiid: unstoppable and unstoppable, unwilling to accept disrespect without paying more than he deserves, very willing to accept the challenge of crushing your carefully adjusted defense into aquarium gravel, and able to completely control the game on both ends Court. This is what makes him such a high-profile MVP candidate, even if he missed 21 games due to various injuries; this is what makes him such an amazing watch because he tries to promote Philadelphia to the No. 1 in 20 years. A seat in the conference finals, and the first championship in nearly 40 years.
However, they will be able to rely on Embiid. He is the engine of the starting fives, scoring 139.4 points per 100 possessions in two games, and is the main defensive back line, enough to suppress a talented Eagles team flying high on Tuesday; I am not sure which player every night. Having a greater impact on his team at both ends of the court. Of course, this is the key to Embiid’s MVP controversy. It is not enough to win that trophy for him. However, more of these performances can give him the opportunity to play for the people he wants. [The Ringer]
David Murphy | Philadelphia Inquirer
So far, Embiid has played six games in this playoffs. The following statistics are provided by Murphy, and we will quote his story later. The following is based on all NBA playoff history:
• 37.5 points per 36 minutes, a record high
•.708 true hit rate, the highest in history
• +27.7 +/-, the highest value ever
We will see if he can stick to it.
When Embiid played in the 2018-19 playoffs, the 76ers scored more points than the Warriors of any member of one of the greatest basketball talents of all time.
Consider all these things together, and a compelling picture begins to appear. Through six games, Embiid played at a historic pace on the offensive end of the court. He may be better on the defensive end. In addition to additions and subtractions and intermittent splits, there are not even many ways to try to quantify personal defensive performance, especially for a rim protector like Embiid. But we may eventually have to figure out if the 76ers’ playoffs continue beyond this round. Because, now, Embiid is preparing to complete a playoff game that requires full and thorough accounting. [Inquirer.com]
Marcus Thompson II | Sports meeting
We don’t want to spoil Thompson’s wonderful and super in-depth article on Seth Curry on The Athletic too much, but considering how important Curry is to the 76ers’ success in the playoffs this year, it’s really amazing. From appearing dull and uninspired after being infected with COVID-19, to automatically throwing three-pointers at critical moments, Curry has overcome a lot to achieve this-including his last name.
Curry has scored 72 points in the past three playoff games. In the past three games, he has made 13 of the past 21 games and scored 40 points in 96 minutes of playing time. According to nba.com data, he is the only player in the tracking data era to have a “full-on” three-pointer (50.2%) of more than 50% in his career. Obviously, the 76ers need him to come forward and arm the explosive Eagles hard. Although Philadelphia’s defense is daunting, Atlanta is strong enough to demand the 76ers offense. Curry is the core of complementing Joel Embiid’s supporting role.
Regarding Curry, you should know this: He is an important part of the hope of winning in this position, and is the product of many years of hard work under the shadow of Curry’s charm. His road here is not paved. [The Athletic]
Get rid of it
Noah Levik | NBC Sports Philadelphia
And now, finally, it was another guard who flashed brilliance after struggling a few days ago. Shaq Milton won the title of Sixth Man of the Year in the preseason, but his performance was not stable, and it seems that he has never really replicated the same impressive results he achieved in the NBA’s daily work last season. Profound level of offensive performance. That is until Tuesday. The 76ers, including head coach Doug Rivers, insisted on using Shaq in the second game and gave him a chance, while the Philadelphia team trailed 0-2 on the cliff, which is commendable.
The question of what is wrong with his jump shots this season may have passed, but the downturn itself never seems to have fundamentally shattered Milton’s confidence or changed his methods.
“Nothing has changed,” he said on April 22, when he finished a 6-shot game in Milwaukee with 20 points that night. “Shoot when you open, pass the ball when you don’t open. The game will always tell you what to do. It’s just locked and working.”
For Milton, when people generally doubt his abilities, his path is worth reviewing on these occasions. His rookie season was spent on a two-way contract, where he split time between Philadelphia (his locker is next to Embiid, so it is necessary to “open up” space) and the development league.
He hasn’t seen all this yet, but he has cleared many obstacles for a 24-year-old young man. No matter what happens next, it will not be amazing. [NBCSP]
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