Sixers-Wizards best and worst: Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons play like All-Stars in season opener, but starting supporting cast needs fine-tuning
The Sixers starters combined to grade out at a minus-93 through three quarters in Wednesday's 113-107 win over the Wizards.
The NBA regular season is upon us, just a few months after the last one ended.
Here is my look at some of the best and worst performances from the 76ers’ 113-107 season-opening victory over the Washington Wizards Wednesday at Wells Fargo Center.
This shouldn’t come as a surprise that Joel Embiid gets this one. He led the Sixers with 29 points and 14 rebounds. Fifteen of his points came in the fourth quarter on 5-for-8 shooting.
I hate to do this in his first game as a Sixer, but it was unavoidable. I have to give it to Danny Green, who only scored two points and missed five of his six shot attempts. He did have two steals, but graded out with game-worst minus 27 in 18 minutes, 16 seconds of action. Green was held out of the game in the fourth quarter.
Best defensive performance
This is a tough one, because Bradley Beal had four steals to go with his game-high 31 points in a losing effort. Meanwhile, Ben Simmons was one of the Sixers’ few defensive bright spots. Simmons finished with a game-high three blocks to go with two steals. Don’t get me wrong: Simmons had his hands full while guarding Russell Westbrook, who secured a triple-double in three quarters. For that reason, I had to overlook the three blocks and recognize how Beal harassed players. So he gets the award.
As bad as the Wizards’ foul shooting (69.6 %) was, I had to give this to the Sixers’ three-point shooting. They missed 20 of 28 threes. That has to be disheartening for the Sixers, considering they brought in Green and Seth Curry to improve in that area. But the duo combined to shoot just 1-for-9.
This goes to the Wizards’ three-point shooting. They made 13 of 27 attempts for 48.1%. Davis Bertans made 4 of 6.
Worst of the worst
This goes to the Sixers starters combining to grade out at a minus-93 through three quarters. It’s obvious that the lineup of Green, Tobias Harris, Embiid, Curry and Simmons has a lot of work to do. The Sixers were better off playing their reserves.