Joel Embiid misses at the buzzer, 76ers lose final home game of 2021 to the Hawks 98-96
Joel Embiid had a chance to tie the game at the buzzer and missed a wide open jump shot. In a low scoring bout, the 76ers fell to the Atlanta Hawks last night by a final score of 98-96.
The Hawks were without Clint Capela, Danilo Gallinari, Kevin Huerter, Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot and Trae Young but were still able to leave South Philadelphia with a win.
This was the final game of the regular season series between these two teams where the Sixers won two of three, but this was definitely the most winnable game for the Sixers and the fact they were unable to do so was embarrassing.
As usual, Embiid led the scoring charge but tonight with just 23 points in this game. Atlanta made the mistake of letting Onyeka Okungwu guard Embiid one on one for a few too many possessions but quickly came to their senses and tried to make life hard for him later in the game.
Even though this was a solid game for Joel, the final play will surely haunt him where he missed a game-tying jumper from the wing.
Rubbing salt in the wound, ESPN Stats & Info reminded us post game that including last night’s game, Joel Embiid is 1-18 in his career on game-tying/go-ahead FG in the final 5 seconds of the 4th quarter and overtime. Only Kemba Walker (0-25) has been worse on such shots since Embiid came into the league in 2016-17 (min. 10 FGA).
An interesting decision from Doc Rivers to have Maxey come off the bench, but he produced at a high level regardless. With 17 points, he was the team’s second leading scorer in his first game off the bench this season.
Defensively Maxey has taken a serious step in the right direction, notching three steals in this one and was the catalyst for the late push. He continues to impress despite of the role he plays, and in a disappointing game he still proved to be a bright spot.
Where’s the help?
Aside from Embiid and Maxey, everyone else was pretty quiet last night. Tobias Harris continues to struggle to produce any type of consistency for this team. Harris finished 5-for-13 from the floor and 0-for-6 from the three point range.
Matisse Thybulle had a really solid game, he is the only vertically athletic player on this team and showed it with a few dunks. In games where he can be impactful offensively it allows him to stay on the court and hold down the fort defensively for longer periods of time. Thybulle was 4-for-8 from the floor but was unable to hit a three pointer, going 0-for-3 from beyond the arc.
As a team, the 76ers shot 6-for-22 from three point range which was good for a miserable 22.6% on the night. It will be tough to win many basketball games, regardless of who you’re playing, when you’re shooting the basketball like that.
Back to .500
The Sixers fall back down to .500 right before Christmas, and aren’t back on the court until Sunday. For every good win Philadelphia has it seems like they have an equally as disappointing one right after, this one was no different.
Here’s a fun little stat that has been floating around Twitter. Every Philadelphia sports team is basically the definition of mediocre right now: Eagles 7-7, Sixers 16-16, Flyers 12-12-5.
Luckily we don’t have to deal with them for a few days and we can all enjoy our holiday.
Mandatory Credit: NBC Sports/Getty Images