All gas, no brakes for Joel Embiid and the Philadelphia 76ers as they jumped out to an 18 point lead in the first quarter en route to a 118-102 victory over the Atlanta Hawks to tie the series one game a piece.
Embiid’s 40 point night was a playoff career high and the first by a 76ers player since Allen Iverson. He also grabbed 13 boards making it his first double double this post-season.
Tobias Harris, who did most of his damage in the first quarter finished the night with 22 points followed by Seth Curry who ended with 21 and went 5-6 from deep. Following their home loss in Game 1, the right adjustments were made especially on the defensive side of the ball.
Hawks’ rising superstar Trae Young exploded for 35 points in Game 1 but only managed to get 21 in Game 2 and though he has made a name for himself as a three point marksman coming up in the Steph Curry era of basketball, he was an inefficient 1-7 from the perimeter and this was mostly because of the defense played by Ben Simmons.
“If the refs don’t call so many fouls, I can be physical. [We’ll] see if the refs let us play a little bit”Ben Simmons on being primary defender on Trae Young
The refs indeed let them play and the switch forced players like Danilo Galinari and Kevin Huerter to step up who each scored 21 and 20 respectively.
Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals is Friday, June 11 in Atlanta where the 76ers enter that game with a 64.5% chance of winning according to ESPN’s Basketball Power Index.
Will the Hawks bounce back in front of the home crowd or will The Process and the rest of the 76ers follow in their footsteps and steal the first game on the road?
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