Celtics vs 76ers, Round 2 Discussion

lars10

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Philly was 2-3 players short. Harden's wildly inconsistent performances, from being the best player on the floor to being an afterthought, is impressive but also predictable.

I think in a Game 7, with a looser whistle, building a team around two guys who get to the free throw line a ton isn't as good of a strategy in practice as it sounds on paper. Harden and Embiid thrive on rip-throughs and soft contact that aren't going to fly in some playoff settings.
I'm not sure there were all that many times when they would have gotten a foul call today.. I think the Celts played really good D on both of them... often doubling Embiid and just staying in Harden's way without reaching. You could see Joe at one point yelling to Brogdon to keep his hands back.. because half of Harden's fouls are from ripping through a players outstretched arm. If you don't give him the opportunity he has to make a tough shot more often than not.

With Embiid.. just felt like they doubled him perfectly most of the game.. tried to disrupt him as much as possible before he got into his dribble and moving towards the basket.

Generally I think they didn't really foul them more than was called.. and Harden's flops were too obvious and against our top players.
 

Eddie Jurak

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Wow. After Philly's 29-point first quarter I was worried. Seemed like the 2-big problem from game 6 (not covering the weak side corner) had carried over to this game. But the Celtics followed that up by holding Philly to 29 in the second quarter and an amazing 10 - including 6 minutes without a bucket - in the third. Tatum was of course, great, too, but I think these Celtics are going to win or lose based on their defense. Increadible play by Al against Horford, too.

It was the non-defense in game 1, and again in most of 4 and 5, that had me thinking Philly would win.
 

Strike4

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too, but I think these Celtics are going to win or lose based on their defense.
I think this game pretty clearly demonstrated that the Celtics don't need to worry too much about offense. They just need to maintain defense intensity and not get frustrated with the refs, with stagnant offense, with defense not turning into transition points. It will happen eventually and the defense will ensure that they are always stay within striking distance. The first two quarters were a test but they hung tough.
 

HomeRunBaker

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It's funny that the Sixers aren't just habitual losers, with an habitually losing coach and GM, they are whiny habitual losers, with a whiny habitually losing coach and GM.

Getting Woj to tweet that pre-game is pretty up there in loser-ness.
Philly was an overwhelming underdog in this series and took it to 7 games. I wouldn't call that anything to be embarrassed about or called losers for.
 

Jimbodandy

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I think this game pretty clearly demonstrated that the Celtics don't need to worry too much about offense. They just need to maintain defense intensity and not get frustrated with the refs, with stagnant offense, with defense not turning into transition points. It will happen eventually and the defense will ensure that they are always stay within striking distance. The first two quarters were a test but they hung tough.
This.

When the Celtics play defense they are unbeatable.

The only team that can beat the Celtics is themselves... by not playing defense. They have offense out the wazoo.
 

snowmanny

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Philly was an overwhelming underdog in this series and took it to 7 games. I wouldn't call that anything to be embarrassed about or called losers for.
Although they've run through Embiid/Simmons/Reddick, then +Butler/ then -Butler +Horford and Harris/and now double MVPs with Embiid/Harden and have zero conference final appearances. Meanwhile the Celtics have been to five ECF since The Process started and the Tatum C's have eliminated the Embiid-6'ers three times culminating in Jayson raining threes over the MVP today.

At some point, in toto, it is embarrassing.

Edit - Or compare them to the Heat, who, over the past five years, never had the talent to match Philly .
 
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HomeRunBaker

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Although they've run through Embiid/Simmons/Reddick, then +Butler/ then -Butler +Horford and Harris/and now double MVPs with Embiid/Harden and have zero conference final appearances. Meanwhile the Celtics have been to five ECF since The Process started and the Tatum C's have eliminated the Embiid-6'ers three times culminating in Jayson raining threes over the MVP today.

At some point, in toto, it is embarrassing.

Edit - Or compare them to the Heat, who, over the past five years, never had the talent to match Philly .
I'm referring to this one series not their history of fucking up the draft. I don't agree with the popular idea that Miami is low on talent. At the end of the day they will likely have 3 HOFers on that roster with two of them still in their prime, and a HOF Head Coach.
 

snowmanny

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I'm referring to this one series not their history of fucking up the draft. I don't agree with the popular idea that Miami is low on talent. At the end of the day they will likely have 3 HOFers on that roster with two of them still in their prime, and a HOF Head Coach.
This one series, I agree with you. Any one series, I agree with you. And sure, if Philadelphia had been coached by Spoelstra all this time I don't think we would be discussing this at all.
 

Auger34

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Philly was an overwhelming underdog in this series and took it to 7 games. I wouldn't call that anything to be embarrassed about or called losers for.
Were they overwhelming underdogs? ESPN had 17 experts predict this series. 6 of them picked the Sixers. Only 7 of them picked the series to go less than 7 games. All 7 of those people picked the series to go 6.
 

HomeRunBaker

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Were they overwhelming underdogs? ESPN had 17 experts predict this series. 6 of them picked the Sixers. Only 7 of them picked the series to go less than 7 games. All 7 of those people picked the series to go 6.
Yes they were. Prior to the series beginning the Celtics were as high as -360 at some books and over -325 everywhere.
 

teddykgb

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One thing I did not expect was the adjustment to just have Tatum attack Embiid. They were hunting that matchup tonight and Tatum just kept blowing by him or shooting over him. When you’re as hot as Tatum was, it’s very hard for anyone to stop you, but they made Embiid work so much harder tonight than they did earlier in the series
 

lars10

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One thing I did not expect was the adjustment to just have Tatum attack Embiid. They were hunting that matchup tonight and Tatum just kept blowing by him or shooting over him. When you’re as hot as Tatum was, it’s very hard for anyone to stop you, but they made Embiid work so much harder tonight than they did earlier in the series
I thought what was nice about it was a couple things 1. Tatum was saying.. I'm not scared of you.. beyond that I WANT to go up against you. 2. It made Embiid have to make a choice.. does he put a ton of effort into guarding Tatum with possible ramifications to offense.. or does he try to play somewhere in the middle.

Felt like it was a huge advantage all game.. if Tatum makes those shots Embiid has to play him out near the three point line.. which means Rob and Al probably have a good chance at the rebound. And if Embiid starts to try and contest at the three.. then Tatum is fast enough to beat him to the hoop. I'd be interested to know if they talked about trying to make Embiid switch as much as possible before the game.. because I think the other thing it made happen was for the smaller, feistier guards that give Tatum fits have to guard other players.. Embiid often lets players blow by him figuring he can beat them at the rim.. Tatum majorly used that to his advantage.
 

TripleOT

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Harden in losses, 12, 16, 13, and 9 points.
Harden in wins, 45, 42, 17 and two game winners.
 

TripleOT

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Dunking on the team that drafted him before the much better player they passed up (Jaylen Brown), who is a major player on the team that beat the Sixers, is an interesting flex. Comfort game is on point though, with the red wine and a nice blanket.
Simmons melted down in that playoff series loss versus the Hawks, but Doc and Embiid threw him under the bus. I’m not surprised he’s trolling Doc and the Sixers. The Sixers checked out on Simmons, so Simmons checked out on the Sixers and the NBA, content to cash checks
 

lars10

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Dunking on the team that drafted him before the much better player they passed up (Jaylen Brown), who is a major player on the team that beat the Sixers, is an interesting flex. Comfort game is on point though, with the red wine and a nice blanket.
Why hasn't he had any of the water yet though?
 

Kliq

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Embiid basically didn't do the two things he is good at on offense; driving towards the hoop and shooting rip-through shots from 10 feet, and taking face-up mid range jumpers quickly. Instead he mostly settled for tight contested mid range jumpers and fade-aways, shots he can occasionally make at a decent rate, but are much more difficult than his normal stuff. Part of it was the double-teaming, but part of it was also him getting tight. I don't think Al played particularly better defense on him today than he has all series, Embiid just was way less aggressive.
 

Van Everyman

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I don’t know about that. Al had multiple possessions where he just was glued to Embiid. The decisions Embiid made to be less aggressive may well have been due to how hard Al was defending him.
 

jablo1312

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After all that, Niang played 3 minutes. Doc wanted some semblance of defense on the floor. Melton/Tucker go 4/11 from 3, didn't feel like either impacted the game at all otherwise. What an avalanche in the 3q.
 

m0ckduck

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I need to rewatch the game but I felt that the Sixers were having lots of success early with the Embiid/Harden pick and roll, collapsing the C’s defense and then spraying it out for open 3s. It seemed like they totally got away from that after the 1st quarter and the ball only went to one of those two guys from there on, with the other one effectively standing around out of the play.

Edit: yes and no. On rewatch, it's clear that Phil gets much better looks from P-n-R sets with Embiid than with any of the other crap they're running But I was wrong that they stopped running it during the C's run. They are still trying to run it, but the C's are applying so much pressure that it's happening too far from the basket to have the same effectiveness as earlier in the game.

Edit2: also the excellent video below analyzes how the C's 2-big lineup helped stifle the P-n-R action
 
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lovegtm

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I need to rewatch the game but I felt that the Sixers were having lots of success early with the Embiid/Harden pick and roll, collapsing the C’s defense and then spraying it out for open 3s. It seemed like they totally got away from that after the 1st quarter and the ball only went to one of those two guys from there on, with the other one effectively standing around out of the play.

Edit: yes and no. On rewatch, it's clear that Phil gets much better looks from P-n-R sets with Embiid than with any of the other crap they're running But I was wrong that they stopped running it during the C's run. They are still trying to run it, but the C's are applying so much pressure that it's happening too far from the basket to have the same effectiveness as earlier in the game.
Philly generated wide-open Harris and Tucker 3s during the Cs big run, and if those had gone down, things might have gone a lot differently.

But they didn't go down, and Philly was too mentally/physically exhausted after that to do much on both ends.
 

lovegtm

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Was also really awesome that the turning point of the game was Harden trying to flop when he lost the ball going up, and getting hit with a flagrant instead. I would complain that the only way to get that reviewed is for the player to lie on the floor awhile like Brown did, but the officials need time to see replays before stopping play, so there isn't much way around it.
 

Eddie Jurak

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I was kind of stunned that Niang grabbing Brown from the Sixers bench ended up being merely a double technical.That's a dangerous play that doesn't remotely equate to taunting (what Brown was called for). And if Brown just plays through it Niang gets away with it. I hope there is some supplemental discipline coming for Niang - IMO he ought to be suspended for a couple of games next year.
 

m0ckduck

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I was kind of stunned that Niang grabbing Brown from the Sixers bench ended up being merely a double technical.That's a dangerous play that doesn't remotely equate to taunting (what Brown was called for). And if Brown just plays through it Niang gets away with it. I hope there is some supplemental discipline coming for Niang - IMO he ought to be suspended for a couple of games next year.
I figuured he would have been ejected, but that there was reluctance from Scott Foster because he missed the play originally. Like, once the initial call was a T on Brown, he wasn’t going to walk it back any further than double-tech.
 

benhogan

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I was kind of stunned that Niang grabbing Brown from the Sixers bench ended up being merely a double technical.That's a dangerous play that doesn't remotely equate to taunting (what Brown was called for). And if Brown just plays through it Niang gets away with it. I hope there is some supplemental discipline coming for Niang - IMO he ought to be suspended for a couple of games next year.
Agreed. Really weird decision after watching the video. I thought there was a possibility they'd correct it at halftime, and rescind Brown's tech. What exactly is Brown supposed to do? He didn't go back & punch or shove Niang, he called out the intentional grab of his knee from the 76ers bench. Foster is never going to autocorrect a T, but a really bad job by Secaucus.

Moving on I'm extremely curious about what the 76ers do with James Harden? Deep down I want him to get MAXed there and screw the Sixers cap for the rest of Embiid's prime (just the kind of guy I am ;))