Observations From Sixers’ Series Clinching Victory vs. Wizards
The Sixers found themselves back on their home floor with another chance to put away the Washington Wizards. This time, they did not allow Washington any opportunity to continue this series any further. Despite being without Joel Embiid, the Sixers walked away with a 129-112 victory and have advanced to the Eastern Conference semifinals.
Here are some takeaways from the series finale.
Seth Curry comes alive
The aggressive of Seth Curry has been a topic for debate all year. Doc Rivers has said on countless occasions that he encourages him to let it fly from deep at a higher clip. Not only did Curry come out looking for shots, but he maintained his aggressiveness through all four quarters.
With the team needing to find scoring from somewhere without Embiid, Curry provided a much-needed lift to the offense. He finished with a team-high 30 points and did so on just 17 shot attempts.
Ben Simmons jokingly said to Curry earlier in the day that he needed 30 from him on Wednesday night, and Curry delivered. His scoring barrage opened the floodgates for what became a balanced attack from the Sixers in game five.
Simmons and Harris lead the charge
With no Embiid in the lineup, it was clear who the Sixers were planning to lean on in game five. Doc Rivers needed the other two members of his big three to set the tone and lead the charge for this group as they looked to send the Wizards packing.
Tobias Harris and Ben Simmons answered the call on Wednesday and turned in stellar performances to close things out. After a rare cold night in game four from Harris, he bounced back incredibly in game five. Ending the game as the team's second-leading scorer with 28 points to go with nine rebounds, six assists, and three steals.
Ben Simmons continued his strong play in this series, filling up the entire stat sheet for the Sixers. Rivers embraced small-ball Wednesday and rolled out Ben Simmons essentially as the starting center.
The 24-year-old All-Star posted a triple-double in the game five victory. Racking up 19 points, ten rebounds, and 11 assists. After receiving a lot of backlash throughout this series, Simmons managed to elevate himself and the others around him when needed.
Tyrese Maxey continues to dazzle
What more can honestly be said about Tyrese Maxey at this point? Every time Doc Rivers calls on the rookie to give this team some life, he does that and so much more.
Many rookies might get overwhelmed at their first taste of the postseason, but not Maxey. He has come on for the Sixers in this series like a player that has been doing this for years. The swagger he showed on the floor in a postseason game is almost unheard of for a teenager.
Maxey finished with 13 points, six rebounds, and two assists in Wednesday's win. The 2020 first-round pick showcased his unlimited potential as a scorer in this league. From working in the pick-and-roll to breaking down defenders in isolation, Maxey continues to leave people wanting more.
Staying prepared and game-ready at all times has been the primary focus for Maxey all season. He never knew when his number would get called next, but he always made sure he was ready when it came. It was that focus and mindset that allowed him to be a key piece in a series-clinching victory for the Sixers in just his first season.
The sky is truly the limit for Tyrese Maxey.