Different day, different opponent, same result. Tuesday night in Philadelphia the hometown 76ers (23-36) fell to the visiting and hated Boston Celtics (34-26) by a final of 109-101. Paul Pierce continues to play at a high level and lead the Celtics with 18 points, 11 rebounds, and 7 assists. Combined with Kevin Garnett’s 18 points and Avery Bradley‘s 22 points, the three Celtics proved to be enough to overcome seven 76ers who finished in double digits.
Jrue Holiday finished with 18 points and 10 assists and Thaddeus Young continued his return from injury with 18 points and 10 rebounds. With the 76ers players scoring as well as they did, including Evan Turner (18 points) Spencer Hawes (14 points) and Royal Ivey (10 points), the 76ers issue became stopping the Celtics and specifically Pierce. Pierce finished 6-10 from the field, including 4-4 from beyond the three point line, and Bradley who has taken over for the injured Rajon Rondo finished 10-15 from the floor. As a team the Celtics finished just slightly over 50% from the floor while the 76ers finished at just over 41%. This is a common theme for 76ers games, where they play well, but shoot poorly and just don’t have what it takes to win games like these.
Arnett Moultrie must have been shocked to spend 20 minutes on the floor last night and he finished 5-5 from the field with 10 points and 4 rebounds. Someone must have knocked Doug Collins upside the head in order to have him play Moultrie this much and his favored Lavoy Allen only 3 minutes. Whatever the reason, it’s good to see Moultrie getting the time that he deserves. The real issue is why Collins continues to put Royal Ivey in the game as a point guard when Jrue Holiday is already one of the top points in the league. Dorrel Wright should be starting at the shooting guard position if Collins is going to continue to put Turner, Young, and Hawes as his starting front court.
The 76ers roster is littered with injured players and roster fillers that are getting minutes with Collins misguided system as Royal Ivey, Damian Wilkins, Lavoy Allen and Jeremy Pargo continue to see time. Jason Richardson and Nick Young are injured and Andrew Bynum has yet to put on the 76ers uniform and play, while Kwame Brown, Pargo, and newly acquired Charles Jenkins are coaches decisions for DNP (Did Not Play). Extended minutes, limited rest, limited reserves and a poor system that requires penetrating scorers to become jump shooters, all lead to the 76ers as a continued mess on the floor and for the foreseeable future.
As I mentioned in the weekly preview, this isn’t going to get much better as the 76ers take on the Atlanta Hawks (33-26) tonight, in Atlanta at 7:30 pm.Tags: Boston Celtics, Evan Turner, Jrue Holiday, loss, NBA, Paul Pierce, Philadelphia 76ers, Royal Ivey, Spencer Hawes, Thaddeus Young