Embiid returns to cool off the Heat. With an 0-2 start, the Philadelphia 76ers return to the Wells Fargo Center. This time the “Phantom on the Process” returns. Joel Embiid returns after clearing concussion protocol and now wearing his protective mask. It was a game-time decision for Embiid. Philly was not the only team to get a player they have been missing back. Kyle Lowry returns after missing the last four games of the playoffs.
In the Begining
At the start, you can see the energy surging through the Sixers with the return of their MVP. James Harden hits his first three. Danny Green gets his first open three of the series. The action in the paint has picked compared to the first two games. Sixers seem to play Tyler Herro more physically. Tobias Harris continues to play both sides of the court. To make things worse for the Heat, they miss plenty of shots including free throws. When Embiid left the court you can see a change in defense, especially for Philly. The Sixers win quarter number one 21-17.
To the Second
It seems Thybulle found his defense back in South Philly. This came in handy with the continued dominant play from the Miami bench. Philly’s offense chills off in the middle of the second. Shake Milton hits a well-needed three when he subs in for Harden after James accumulated three fouls. The refs ruling confirms that Shake Milton was fouled before the buzzer went off. Milton goes to the line and makes 1 out of 2 and the Sixers will head to the break with a 41-34 lead. All this despite scoring just 4 points in the final 6+ minutes of the 2nd quarter. Heat only shooting 32.6 percent and 2 for 16 on threes. 34.3% field goals for the Sixers at the half.
The Last 24 Mins
It took almost 3 minutes for the Heat to get their first points of the second half. That doesn’t stop the Heat from going on a 13-0 run that was finally slowed by back-to-back 3s from Danny Green. Sloppy start to the second half for Philadelphia. Turnovers continue to haunt the Sixers. Maxey hits his first field goal of the night with a timely three. He follows up with two break-away points. Georges Niang finally contributed with a three. Both teams start to find their stroke late in the second half. Sixers retain a small lead, 68-65. Butler has 24 points in the first three to lead all scorers.
Sixers come out of the fourth with high energy. A chippy night continues with off-setting technicals between Thybulle and PJ Tucker. Maxey with a long three and found his stroke late in the game. Miami has some quick fouls early in the 4th. This put Philly in the bonus with 9:21 left in the 4th quarter. Maxey comes alive hitting threes and keeping plays going. Embiid returns to the court and increases the lead with a fade-away jumper and draws a foul. Danny Green ties a playoff career-high 7 three-pointers and a season-high 21 points. Embiid returns to cool off the Heat. Sixers win 99-79.
Al is one of the two co-creators of Edge of Philly Sports. Al started radio and podcasting in 2012 and covering sports in 2015. A lifelong Philly sports fan since watching the Eagles, Phillies, Sixers, and Flyers with his grandfathers at age 7. Al always looks at the other side of the hot topics and gives his different outlook on those topics. Web and Graphic Design.