Here is my look at some of the best and worst performances from the 76ers’ 109-98 victory over the Boston Celtics on Thursday night at the Wells Fargo Center.
Best performance: This has to go to Josh Richardson. The shooting guard showed, once again, why the Sixers were elated to acquire him in exchange for Jimmy Butler from the Miami Heat this summer. Richardson scored a game-high 29 points, his second-highest total of the season. He did that by making 9 of 16 shots and all 10 of his foul shots. Richardson’s 7 assists were one off his season high.
Worst performance: I’m giving this to Jaylen Brown. The Celtics shooting guard, an NBA All-Star candidate, had his worst shooting performances of the season. Brown missed 10 of his 12 shots en route to scoring a season-low four points. The fourth-year veteran also had more turnovers (three) than assists (two).
Best defensive performance: This was a tough one. But I’m giving to Sixers reserve center Norvel Pelle. He finished with two blocks and altered several other shots in 12 minutes, 38 seconds of action. The 26-year-old received a standing ovation from the sellout crowd of 20,822 when he left the game for good with 9:05 remaining.
Worst statistic: This goes to the combined shooting of Celtics standout Brown (2-for-12), Gordon Hayward (4-for-11) and Jayson Tatum (4-for-13). They made just 10 of 36 shots, 27.7%.
Best statistic: I had to give this to Marcus Smart’s three-point shooting. The Celtics reserve guard made 5 of 7 three-pointers, 71.4%.
Best of the best: I have to give this to the Sixers’ performance without Joel Embiid. They were without Embiid for the first of many games because the two-time All-Star center will be having surgery Friday in New York to repair a torn ligament in his left ring finger. The Sixers excelled with their next-man-up approach en route to nabbing a 3-0 season-series advantage over their Atlantic Division rivals.