4 Takeaways From Sixers Preseason Win Over Pistons
PHILADELPHIA, PA (973espn.com) -- The Philadelphia 76ers have had quite the preseason so far. Four out five games in, and they are unbeaten at this point. Recently on Tuesday, the Sixers returned home from a two-game road trip.
After collecting wins over the Charlotte Hornets and the Orlando Magic, the Sixers took on opponent number four, the Detroit Pistons at the Wells Fargo Center. Without Ben Simmons and Al Horford, the Sixers decided to start Matisse Thybulle and Furkan Korkomaz as they shifted their starting lineup around.
The changes didn't cause much of a difference for Philly, as they concluded the game with yet, another victory by defeating the Pistons 106-86. The Sixers continue to be happy with their progress so far. After an entertaining defensive matchup put on by the Sixers, here are the four key takeaways from the preseason action on Tuesday.
1. Matisse Thybulle: The Rookie's Starting Debut
He's only four preseason games into his NBA career, and Sixers' first-round pick Matisse Thybulle already picked up a start. Not only has his defense been borderline elite -- but Thybulle's offense has been quite impressive as well.
As Sixers' head coach Brett Brown lost Ben Simmons for Tuesday night, he was forced to shift some things around at the guard position. So Brown decided to move Josh Richardson to point guard while bringing in Thybulle at shooting guard, where he would typically come in as a reserve.
The rookie clocked in a little over 25 minutes, notching seven points on offense. Meanwhile, on defense, Thybulle led the Sixers with four steals and picked up two blocks. He also collected a total of six rebounds, as well. While the competition was admittedly tougher for Thybulle, the young rookie still had a solid starting debut.
2. Furkan Korkmaz Helped Himself Out a Lot
I'm not sure where Furkan Korkmaz fell into Brett Brown's future lineups during the regular season before Tuesday night's game. Although Korkmaz has been around for a couple of years, his time with the Sixers has been filled with ups and downs.
On Tuesday, the veteran received a grand opportunity to join the starting lineup, and Korkmaz put on one of his better performances. Both offensively and defensively, Korkmaz looked like he just fit right in with the lineup. He was a plus-12 in 23 minutes on the floor. After accounting for ten points, four rebounds, a steal, and a block, Korkomaz saw his stock rise in the eyes of Brett Brown on Tuesday.
3. Norvel Pelle Received a Standing Ovation
Nobody could've predicted this. While Joel Embiid had the best game for the Sixers, he didn't receive anywhere near the same amount of praise on Tuesday than the two-way center, Norvel Pelle did. He only saw the floor late in the game for a total of 12 minutes, and he surely made the most of that time.
As a whole, the Sixers collected 15 blocks against Detroit. Pelle was responsible for five of them as he led the team in that category. The first couple of blocks were shocking. The last three were showstopping. Towards the end of the game, Pelle had fans on the edge of their seats as he received multiple standing ovations.
4. Joel Embiid Picks Up Preseason High
At this point, an excellent performance from Sixers' center Joel Embiid is hardly shocking. We know the All-Star is always primed for a big game when the bright lights are on. Some players need their key stars surrounding them in order to cook up some statistics. Embiid is not one of those players, though.
Without Ben Simmons or Al Horford in the mix, Embiid just simply stepped up. The Sixers' big man collected the game-high of 24 points in only 22 minutes of playing time. That just so happened to be his preseason high of point totals. At this point, Embiid seems good to go for the regular season.
Justin Grasso covers the Philadelphia 76ers for South Jersey's 97.3 ESPN. You can follow Justin on Twitter: @JGrasso_