Here are my main takeaways and best and worst awards from the 76ers' 113-92 victory over the Atlanta Hawks on Monday night at the Wells Fargo Center:
– So far, the 4-3 Sixers are the NBA version of bullies. They're undefeated in four favorable games. However, they're winless against playoff-caliber teams on the road. That's not a good sign for them in Tuesday night's game at Toronto.
– Atlanta shut down Joel Embiid by double-teaming the center almost every time he got the ball. Embiid took only nine shots, tying Dario Saric for the low among the team's starters, and scored just 10 points in 30 minutes.
– Saric has the look of someone frustrated by becoming the forgotten man in the Sixers scheme. The 2016-17 runner-up for rookie of the year gets fewer shots than Embiid, Ben Simmons, Markelle Fultz, JJ Redick, and Robert Covington. As a result, he basically shoots the ball whenever he gets it. The struggling Saric appears to be pressing a little bit.
– The Sixers might take some defensive pride in the Hawks' shooting 37.2 percent overall and making just 8 of 37 three-pointers. But the Sixers defense had very little to do with Atlanta's shooting woes. The Hawks are a bad team that missed a lot of shots.
– Fultz's pull-up jumper from 10 feet looks a little bit better. The problem is that coach Brett Brown keeps saying that Fultz's best position is point guard. Simmons was the 2017-18 rookie of the year as a point guard. That's why their pairing as the starting backcourt is a struggle. Because they're not outside shooters, they're liabilities together unless in transition. The team's most impressive run (20-6) Monday came at the start of the third quarter with Fultz on the bench. It's obvious that the team is better when Simmons is paired with a shooter.
Best and worst
Best performance: This was easy, because Simmons took over the game in the third quarter. That's when he scored 15 of his game-high 21 points. The Sixers standout also finished with 12 rebounds, nine assists and one block for his fifth double-double of the season.
Worst performance: Taurean Prince gets this one. The Hawks forward had five points, missed 10 of his 11 shots, and graded out at a game-worst minus-16.
Best defensive performance: This goes to Covington for finishing with a game-high three steals to go with two blocks.
Worst statistic: The Hawks hit 1 of 7 three-pointers in the middle two quarters.
Best statistic: Simmons made 5 of 6 shots in the third quarter.