Taking care of business
Getting an early lead, expanding on that lead, and allowing the starters some rest. That’s exactly how the Sixers should be playing against the NBA’s lesser teams and it’s exactly how they played two nights in a row. At home against Memphis on Wednesday then again in Orlando on Thursday the Sixers built a 30-plus advantage, allowing the reserve unit to finish out the game while the guys who log heavy minutes are able rest through the final quarter. Seven of the Sixers’ final 11 games will be against sub-.500 teams and taking care of them in the same fashion would go a long way in securing the home court advantage that the team so desperately wants. This is exactly the type of basketball the Sixers need to be playing to finish out the regular season, not only for much needed rest of the starting unit, but also to head into the playoffs with a favorable amount of momentum.
Crashing the boards pays off
The Sixers absolutely destroyed the Magic in rebounding finishing with 56 rebounds to Orlando’s 40. The Sixers have finished with 50-or-more rebounds in 22 games this season and are 18-4 in those games. Joel Embiid, who played just 20 minutes in the blowout in Orlando, finished with 17 points and nine rebounds, while Ben Simmons and Dario Saric combined for 21 rebounds in the victory. Sometimes an overlooked statistic, rebounding is often the result of good defense and efficient rebounding leads to the kind of offense the Sixers prefer — fast breaks and early shot clock offense. The Sixers finished with 12 second chance points and 32 fast break points to the Magic’s 10.