Sixers nab fourth straight win with 103-95 victory over Grizzlies
Ben Simmons had an impressive shooting performance in the win, and JJ Redick added a game-high 24 points.
Ben Simmons powered into the lane and attempted a bank shot from 3 feet out. Jaren Jackson Jr. made a useless attempt to stop him.
The Memphis Grizzlies rookie might as well have just gotten out of the way. Simmons was hard to stop in the lane Sunday night. The point guard had one of his best shooting performances in the 76ers’ 103-95 victory at Wells Fargo Center.
He made eight of 10 shots as the Sixers (17-8) won their fourth straight game and for the eighth time in nine outings. They are 8-2 since acquiring Jimmy Butler in a trade with the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Simmons finished 19 points, 12 rebounds, six assists and two steals for his 16th double-double of the season. If there was a blemish on this night, it was his 3-for-8 performance at the foul line.
Did he just take what the defense gave him? Was he able to find some weaknesses in the Grizzlies defense?
“No, I told Kyle Anderson,” Simmons said, “I saw him [Saturday] night after the [Travis Scott] concert. I told him I was going to go at him.”
Not even a sprained left ankle, suffered in the first quarter, stopped the 2018 rookie of the year from getting the best of the Grizzlies (13-9). He went to the locker room to get it taped then played with no apparent ill effects.
“It’s just a sprain,” Simmons said of coming back.
He acknowledged post game that his ankle was sore while sitting at his locker with his foot in a large container of ice.
Simmons' best shot was a two-handed follow dunk off JJ Redick’s missed layup to give the Sixers a 92-81 advantage with 4 minutes, 51 seconds remaining in the game.
“I thought Ben was our most consistent player all night from the beginning of the game,” Redick said, "You know [he] had some big plays in the fourth, defensively, put-back dunk.
“He was fantastic tonight.”
Simmons recorded three of his assists, one steal and two rebounds in addition to his one emphatic basket in the fourth quarter.
Butler, however, had another dominating fourth quarter to deny the Grizzlies a come-from-behind victory.
The Sixers swingman scored 13 of his 21 points in the final quarter, hitting seven of eight free throws and key jumper that gave the Sixers a 97-89 lead with 49.6 seconds left.
Redick, who recovered from an 0-for-5 first quarter, finished with a game-high 24 points, his 34th straight game with 10 or more points -- a career best.
Joel Embiid added 15 points and 14 rebounds for his league-leading 23rd double-double. The All-Star center made just four of 13 shots. Mike Conley paced Memphis with 21 points.
The Sixers were without Wilson Chandler. The starting power forward was sidelined after taking a knee to the thigh against the Washington Wizards on Friday. It was the 12th game he’s missed this season.
Chandler was sidelined the first nine games with a left hamstring strain. The other games came on the back end of back-to-backs. At that time, Chandler wasn’t cleared to play on consecutive nights.
>> PHOTOS: Sixers beat Grizzlies
Chandler is expected to play in Wednesday night in Toronto. He’ll continue to rest on Monday on the team’s scheduled off day.
“We don’t feel like it’s that smart to force feed this,” Sixers coach Brett Brown said.
Mike Muscala, who started in place of Chandler, finished with eight points.
Reserve guard Markelle Fultz was on the bench with his teammates. The first overall pick of the 2017 draft is seeing shoulder specialists.
Fultz was originally supposed to see a specialist last Monday in New York. Then his agent said he would see multiple specialists in the early part of last week before saying he would see more into this week,
Sunday marked the sixth straight game Fultz has missed.