Joel Embiid gave the Philadelphia 76ers a tough overtime win in Toronto. The center hit an incredible shot at the last second to make it 104-101, giving the Sixers a 3-0 lead in the series.
Toronto Raptors (5) – Philadelphia 76ers (4) 101:104 OT (BOXSCORE), Series: 0-3
It wasn’t pretty, it had to be a stroke of genius and Embiid had that up his sleeve. 0.8 seconds before the end of overtime the center hit a three-point turn to win, after the Sixers’ possession seemed spoiled. Toronto couldn’t get rid of a pitch and therefore is already on the brink of the end after a third straight loss.
The hosts fought hard for 53 minutes and led most of the season (biggest advantage: +17 in the second quarter). OG Anunoby (26 points, 4/9 of three) and Gary Trent Jr. (24, 4/9 of three) continued to hit important shots, while Pascal Siakam (12, 6/16) played a great game on defense and yet it was again not enough.
Embiid, who struggled early on, dominated the second half, scoring 33 points (12/20 FG), 13 rebounds and 6 turnovers in 44 minutes. In extra time, the Cameroonian not only hit the winning goal, but also this unbelievable shot after a pirouette. James Harden (19, 7/13, 10 assists) went up and down again, but was eliminated just before the end of regulation time.
Tyrese Maxey (19) increasingly held the ball in overtime and, in addition to Embiid, scored the guests’ other two field goals in overtime. Tobias Harris (11, 4/9, 12 rebounds) had a double-double but almost became a tragic figure, after throwing a seemingly easy hook with the final section siren he counted only on the ring for a possible victory.
Raptors lead early and unnerve Philadelphia
The Sixers’ game was initially reminiscent of regular season performances against Toronto. The Raptors dominated the boards, forcing defensive turnovers and creating problems for Embiid with double teams because the center didn’t always get the right reads (4 of the Sixers’ 8 TOs in the first quarter). However, Toronto only trailed off by double digits towards the end of the section when all three finally went down (29:19).
Philadelphia had just one field goal from a two-pointer, while the Raptors already had 9 points in the transition. The lead continued to grow before Harden finally appeared again as the Sixers’ top scorer to keep the guests in the game (56:46).
The Sixers also now interspersed a zone defense more often and thus broke the hosts’ pace. The three didn’t go down as desired, Embiid finally took over on the other side. The pick’n’roll with Harden worked perfectly, the Raptors also moved into a zone to stop this play. However, the guests always lagged behind as the Raptors continued to play in small races.
Joel Embiid sinks Toronto with amazing game winner
With the exception of a few quick break points, nothing was given away for free, stones were knocked out – on both sides. With six minutes left, a putback from Maxey equalized, but VanVleet responded from downtown after the Raptors fired ten tickets in a row.
The hall was boiling now, but the Sixers always had an answer. Harden equalized again with a floater and a last-minute free throw, but fouled Precious Achiuwa (20, 9/11) with 27 seconds left with the clock ticking, but the Raptors forward missed both attempts.
So the Sixers had a chance to win, but Harris missed a seemingly easy short hook after an offensive rebound (95:95). In overtime, he remained competitive, hardly scoring. Heavy throws were the order of the day, and Embiid landed one. The Sixers didn’t actually generate anything with the last possession, so Coach Rivers had to wait 0.9 seconds on the clock. The unbelievable trio Embiid followed, Toronto couldn’t resist and is about to be eliminated.
Raptors vs. Sixers: the series at a glance
|1||april 17||12:00 pm||Philadelphia 76ers||Toronto Raptors||131:111|
|two||April 19th||1:30||Philadelphia 76ers||Toronto Raptors||112:97|
|3||april 21||2 hours||Toronto Raptors||Philadelphia 76ers||101:104 AT|
|4||April 23||8 pm||Toronto Raptors||Philadelphia 76ers||–|
|5*||april 28||2 hours||Philadelphia 76ers||Toronto Raptors||–|
|6*||April 30th||to be defined||Toronto Raptors||Philadelphia 76ers||–|
|7*||1st May||to be defined||Boston Celts||Toronto Raptors||–|