Philadelphia, PA

Philadelphia Goes up Against a Game Over Atlanta and Reclaim Home-court Advantage

Tom Handy

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Philadelphia 76ers playing the Atlanta Hawks in the NBA playoffsScreenshot from Twitter

Philadelphia is excited as the 76ers claim home-court advantage as they come back to Philly to play the Hawks as they lead the series 2 to 1.

After playing against the 76er’s defense, Young told reporters, "I don't know yet. We've got to figure it out the next couple of days. Obviously, if I had the answers, we wouldn't be talking about it right now."

With the 76ers blitzing with Joel Embiid, Tobias Harris, or Ben Simmons when Young has the ball, it’s hard for him to make the right moves.
Philadelphia is excited as the 76ers claim home-court advantage as they come back to Philly to play the Hawks as they lead the series 2 to 1.
After playing against the 76er’s defense, Young told reporters, "I don't know yet. We've got to figure it out the next couple of days. Obviously, if I had the answers, we wouldn't be talking about it right now."

Simmons, Embiid, and Thybulle were three of the 12 players who received votes for defensive player of the year. Simmons finished second to Utah’s Rudy Gobert for defensive player of the year.

The 76ers have been very effective defensively against the Hawks.

"It's been big," Rivers told reporters following Friday's Game 3 victory. "Him and Matisse and George [Hill] tonight were the three guys. It's exhausting when you think about what we're asking them to do. Follow Trae Young around. ... It's tough, but [Simmons] is young. He's got endurance, so it's been good for us."

Philadelphia’s offense is hot as the 76ers are led by strong shooting from Joel Embiid. Over the first three games, Embiid has put up 39 points and grabbed nine rebounds, 40 points, and 13 rebounds in game 2, and 27 points and nine rebounds in game 3.

The Hawks have no answer to stop Embiid who finished second as the Most Valuable Player in the league behind Nikola Jokic.

As a team, the 76ers have shot 55% from the field. Philadelphia scored 15 more points than Atlanta in the third quarter. The team went 8 for 8 on their first shots as the quarter began.

In the third quarter, Philadelphia started to pull away. Doc Rivers asked Ben Simmons to get more active.

"We just thought he passed up too many opportunities -- in the fast break, at the post. And so we told him we were going to come out and feature him on the post," Rivers said of Simmons. "And he was great for us. It's exactly what we need. With his pace and power, it was great."
"I was just trying to push the pace, get in the lanes, find my guys and stay aggressive. Get to the rim," Doc said. "I think I did a good job of that, that second half."

Simmons scored 11 of his 18 points in the third quarter. Simmons and Embiid accounted for 30 of Philadelphia's 34 points in the quarter.

"That was definitely the quarter they were able to get their momentum and get separation," said Young, who still scored a game-high 28 points on 9-for-17 shooting and made eight assists.

Doc Rivers was instrumental in helping the 76ers come out playing to win in the third quarter.

"It's exhausting when you think about what we're asking Ben to do: follow Trae Young around, follow him around screens and push the ball up the floor with pace," Rivers said. "That's all we talked about at halftime when one of my coaches reminded me that he was guarding Trae when I was yelling at him about pace.
Joel Embiid encouraged Simmons as well to play harder. "I just told him, 'You need to be aggressive and you need to attack because there's a lot of space. Especially with the way they're guarding me,'" Embiid said. "So I told him to just be aggressive and just go out there and just dominate."

Ben made one play as he threw the ball to Embiid who dunked the ball.

"We've been playing together for so long that we know each other," Embiid said. "He knows me, he knows where I need the ball and I also know how I can get him open. So it was a good pass, and I just did my best to finish it."

Philadelphia plays game four in Atlanta on Monday, June 14 at 7:30 pm.

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