Though they sit squarely on.500, the trends are pointing upward for the 76ers if Embiid can stay healthy.
After a few days of "pomp and circumstance", the Sixers and Celtics gave up their afternoon tea for an afternoon game in front of 19,078 fans in London's O2 Arena. But after rolling out to a large first-half lead, thanks in large part to Redick's hot shooting, Philadelphia was unable to maintain that level of production. At the peak of strangeness, Simmons capped the run with a turn-around jumper. He finished the evening with a game-high total of 22 (7-12 fg, 5-9 3fg, 3-3 ft). Aron Baynes, Al Horford, and Boston's help defenders played a substantial role as well.
A number of the players - including Kyrie Irving and Joel Embiid - set to take the court at the O2 Arena are also likely to appear in February's All-Star Game, some surely are going to be bolstered by votes they get from those fans in London and watching worldwide. Nowadays, we have satellites and spacecrafts that can send back clear images of the Earth's curvature.
The Celtics ripped Philly, 108-97, on November 30 in Boston and toppled the Sixers in their arena, 102-92, back on October 20. "To know exactly what you're getting when a person goes in the game, I would say is very unique, and with Daniel you do". After one quarter, the Sixers had only turned the ball over twice. Again, the team will need some time to adjust with the return of Thomas, but he actually weakens them further defensively. Most nights, they see limited time, but when the situation arises, these guys are ready to answer the call. It's hard. I see everything behind it, and it's a lot of great information.
The Sixers next game is at 1 p.m. Monday against the Toronto Raptors at Wells Fargo Center. "They come out, and they execute the gameplan", Jaylen Brown said, when asked about the secret to the Celtics' success in defending Embiid.
The final score ended up being a bit flattering to the 76ers, who trailed by as many as 18 points in the final two minutes before scoring the game's last seven points.
The Boston Celtics are 6-0 straight up and 4-2 against the spread over their last six games. These two teams will meet up for the first time since November 30th 2017, a 108-97 Boston victory (Irving: 36 points (5-8 3FG)).
But after the Celtics' flight across the Atlantic Ocean this week for Thursday's game in London, it begged asking (even if it wasn't the Australian-born point guard's first flight across the world): Does Irving still think the Earth is flat?