The Sixers began the last five game stretch on the road vs the Utah Jazz, and ended on the road with two games vs the 5-seed Toronto Raptors. Here is how they fared:
134-123 loss to Utah Jazz
118-113 win vs Houston Rockets
112-107 win vs Chicago Bulls
110-103 loss vs Toronto Raptors
109-102 win vs Toronto Raptors
After going 3-2 in those contests, it’s time to discuss whose stock is up and whose is down.
3 game average (out vs Houston & Chicago):
28.3 points, 9 rebounds, 8.3 assists
The 3-time all-star enjoyed quite the week. After missing the first of this five game stretch, Simmons went into Utah with a point to prove. And boy, did he prove it, setting a career high 42 points, to go along with 12 assists and 9 rebounds.
“I felt like it was a little bit of disrespect putting him on me, but it is what it is,” said Simmons, in response to the Jazz choosing to defend him with Rudy Gobert.
After missing the next game, Ben Simmons came back to average 21.5 points per game in two games vs the Toronto Raptors. The biggest statistic of them all is the fact that Simmons shot 81.8% from the line (27-33) in his last three games. He’s making huge strides in that area by not only attacking more, but finishing when he gets to the line.
The young star is getting comfortable scoring, and that’s a scary sight for the rest of the NBA.
4 game average (out vs Utah):
30.7 points, 14 rebounds, 4.5 assists
Despite poor showings in back to back contests vs the Toronto Raptors, Joel Embiid had a dominant stretch of games, continuing his pursuit of his first ever MVP award.
In only 35 minutes vs the Chicago Bulls, Joel Embiid set a new career high with 50 points, on 17-26 shooting. As I mentioned many times on social media and throughout various articles, Joel Embiid is having a season we haven’t seen from a big man since…… ever.
After this two game stretch where he only averaged 21 points and 14 rebounds, we should see the same dominant Embiid going forward.
5 game average:
23.6 points, 9.6 rebounds, 5.2 assists
Can you really say Tobias Harris’ stock is up? Since the clunker opening night, Tobias Harris has been as consistent as they come.
Nevertheless, Harris has enjoyed a nice five game stretch, where he scored 20 or more in four of the five games.
Tobias Harris followed the news of his all-star snubbing with a 23 point, 7 rebound, 5 assist game on 66% shooting overall and 75% from 3.
Let’s hope the snub gives him some added motivation to his impressive play so far this season.
5 game average:
5.2 points, 2.4 rebounds, 1 assist
It feels a bit unfair to say Korkmaz’ stock is down after scoring a season high, 19 points vs the Toronto Raptors. However, this one game doesn’t make up for the prior four games, where he was unplayable. Doc Rivers has asked a lot of the 7th man, and Korkmaz has no delivered.
Labeled a sharpshooter, the Turkish wing shot 1-9 from 3 before his “breakout” tonight vs Toronto.
Doc Rivers claimed that Korkmaz lost his spot in the rotation to rookie Isaiah Joe. You have to wonder if tonight’s game will get it back for him.
3 game average (DNP vs TOR 2x)
7.3 points, 1.7 rebounds, 1 assist
Just looking at his numbers, you wouldn’t think the rookie point guard was playing poorly. His stock isn’t down due to his play, his stock is down due to his consecutive Did Not Play’s in the Toronto mini series.
Maxey has had an up and down rookie season so far. After leading the COVID Sixers in points per game, over a three game stretch, his minutes steadily declined, as players got more healthy.
Doc Rivers is notorious for not playing rookies, so this isn’t something to stress over. The rookie will have to make the most of his inconsistent minutes as the season goes on.
4 game average (out vs Toronto):
2.2 points, 2.7 rebounds, 0 assists
Mike Scott has been, for lack of a better word, bad. Over the last 5 games, he’s scored in only one game and registered a DNP.
Daryl Morey and Doc Rivers have, both, expressed a need in a backup stretch 4 and that is fully due to Mike Scott’s play.
As a throw-in, in the Tobias Harris trade three seasons ago, Scott just hasn’t been the same since the NBA banned the ninja headbands.
As we approach the trade deadline, it seems as though this most recent DNP will become the norm.
The Sixers have four games left in their first half schedule vs the sub .500 Dallas Mavericks and Cleveland Cavaliers, as well as two huge tests vs the Indiana Pacers and Utah Jazz. They will be looking to close out strong, heading into the break. #HereTheyCome