Sixers win third straight; Thaddeus Young is hurt
Good news is sometimes accompanied by bad news.
Such was the case Monday night at the Wells Fargo Center, where the Sixers matched their season-high three-game winning streak with a 78-61 rout of a depleted Orlando Magic team that was missing its top four scorers.
However, any joy the Sixers may have gleaned from beating the Magic (14-34) was tempered by the loss of forward Thaddeus Young to a strained left hamstring in the second quarter.
Young, who has 12 double-doubles this season, appeared to suffer the injury while trying to retrieve a loose ball.
"That's going to be a big loss with Thad," Sixers coach Doug Collins said of Young, who is averaging 15.1 points and a team-high 7.4 rebounds. "It looked like his foot just slipped on a little wet spot. He's the one guy on the team who dives for those loose balls. He laid himself out and unfortunately he got hurt on the play."
Young will have an MRI exam on Tuesday, Sixers spokesman Mike Preston said.
Young has started all 47 games this season, but he almost certainly will not appear in any of the four remaining games before the all-star break. The Sixers will play their last game before the break on Feb. 13 and will not play again until Feb. 20 at Minnesota.
"It's going to be tough because there is no replacing what Thad brings to the table," Sixers center Spencer Hawes said after leading the Sixers with 21 points and a season-high 14 rebounds. "But that's the name of the game. Injuries happen. We're trying to catch up to Boston and they just lost their best player for the year and look how they responded."
The Celtics are the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference playoff standings, and they have a three-game lead on the Sixers. Last week, Boston lost all-star point guard Rajon Rondo for the season with a torn anterior cruciate ligament.
The Sixers also got 14 assists and 13 points from Jrue Holiday. Nick Young added 15 points, and Lavoy Allen came off the bench to gather 10 points and six rebounds.
Orlando's 61 points were the lowest total by an opponent in the history of the Wells Fargo Center, which opened in 1996. The Magic lost their 10th straight and for the 21st time in 23 games.
They went into the game with a makeshift roster because of injuries to starters Arron Aflalo (left calf), Chester's Jameer Nelson (left forearm), Glenn Davis (left foot) and key reserve J.J. Reddick (right shoulder).
Orlando had just 46 points after three quarters and trailed by 20 points early in the fourth. E'Twaun Moore led Orlando with 18 points.
The Sixers improved to 4-1 on this eight-game homestand. However, they are finished facing the jellyfish-soft portion of the homestand against Washington, Sacramento and Orlando. Two of the remaining games are against Indiana and the Los Angeles Clippers.
"Somebody is going to have to step up," Holiday said.
Contact John N. Mitchell at email@example.com. Follow @JmitchInquirer on Twitter.