Sixers Keys to Victory in Game 2 vs Wizards
The Sixers return to action tonight for Game 2 against the Washington Wizards. The first game started off less than ideal, with Joel Embiid getting into foul trouble. Luckily the team got balanced contributions from just about everyone. Tobias Harris led the way with 37 points on 15/29 shooting. Ben Simmons put on a passing and defensive clinic. The rest of the guys provided good team defense and floor spacing on offense.
Staying out of foul trouble
A big reason why the Wizards were able to hang around so long in Game 1 was due to Embiid getting into early foul trouble. I hate to complain about the refs (I really don’t), but they seemed to have an agenda for Embiid that night. This, in return, made the Wizards players much more comfortable attacking the rim. Joel Embiid logged just under 30 minutes in Game 1, which is actually less than his 31 minutes per game average in the regular season.
It’s quite simple, keep the big fella out of foul trouble. This is pretty fair to expect, considering that Embiid averaged a career-low 2.4 personal foul per game. We all know the impact Joel has on the offensive end of the court. But his defense is quite underrated. Perhaps it gets overlooked because Ben Simmons is arguably the defensive player of the year.
Sixers must limit Washington’s transition offense
One of the few issues on this Sixers team is their transition defense. It really struggled in the first half of Game 1. But Doc Rivers was very pleased with the adjustment made in the second half. This will be a huge dynamic for the rest of this series, as the Wizards had the number 1 transition offense in the NBA this season.
When Russell Westbrook is on the court, we all know it is nearly impossible to stop the freight train that he is. Luckily the Sixers have Ben Simmons. Not to mention Joel Embiid and Dwight Howard, who are both great rim protectors. As long as those two can get back on defense, the Sixers should fair pretty well.
Mandatory Credit; GettyImages