3 storylines to watch as Sixers try to respond after big loss originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia
The 2-1 Sixers will be back on home turf Tuesday night for a matchup against the 0-2 Raptors.
Joel Embiid is probable after missing the Sixers’ blowout loss to the Cavs on Sunday with back tightness.
Here are the essentials:
When: 7 p.m. with Sixers Pregame Live at 6:15 p.m.
Where: Wells Fargo Center
Broadcast: NBC Sports Philadelphia
Live stream: NBCSportsPhiladelphia.com and the MyTeams app
And here are three storylines to watch:
Who takes Korkmaz’s minutes?
With Furkan Korkmaz sidelined for at least two weeks by a left adductor strain, what will change on the Sixers’ bench?
Matisse Thybulle, who had his third-year option picked up Monday, would be an obvious candidate to play more. It’s possible Tyrese Maxey could slide into a larger role, as well.
Typically, the conventional thinking after an injury to Korkmaz would be that the Sixers need to replace his three-point shooting. However, he’s made just 4 of his first 16 three-point tries this season. Thybulle and Maxey are a combined 0 for 4 from long distance in the early going, and the Sixers are at 32.3 percent from three-point range as a team.
Head coach Doc Rivers isn’t concerned that the team hasn’t quite hit its collective shooting stride yet.
“That’s OK,” he said Sunday night. “They’ve just got to keep shooting. I don’t think we have great rhythm yet. I’m really not that concerned about that. It’s three games and we’ve won two of them. I’ll take two wins. We didn’t play well tonight, I’ll take that loss.”
Trouble in transition
Transition offense is usually very efficient. So far, though, it hasn’t been for the Sixers.
They’ve scored 0.91 points per transition possession, 27th in the NBA at this very early stage. Toronto happens to be last in the league with 0.80 points per transition possession.
That’s not a sign the Sixers should try to push the pace less, but an indication that they’re still figuring out how to play together in the open floor. They turned it over 21 times Sunday and often were not on the same page, improperly spaced or both.
Simmons vs. Siakam
Not for the first time, Ben Simmons will face off against a player he defended very well last season. Pascal Siakam shot 5 for 19 (1 of 9 from three-point territory) when defended by Simmons. The Sixers would be smart to stick with that matchup.
Simmons has five steals, seven blocks and an NBA-high 17 deflections through three games. Opponents have shot 35.9 percent when guarded by him.
If Simmons takes Siakam, Danny Green and Seth Curry would likely be the Sixers initially tasked with defending the Raptors’ small, skilled backcourt of Kyle Lowry and Fred VanVleet. Perhaps Rivers will also give Maxey some minutes against one of those guards.
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Published: 2020-12-29 15:34:04
Tags: #Storylines #live #stream #game #time