After four straight road losses, the Sixers return home to face a Memphis Grizzlies team that has far exceeded expectations and is led by Rookie of the Year candidate Ja Morant. The game will start at 7 tonight.
The Grizzlies are 26-25 and have won two in a row and 13 of their last 16 games. They occupy the eighth and final Western Conference playoff spot.
Morant should be the runaway winner for Rookie of the Year. In addition to producing at a high level, he has become among the more crowd-pleasing players in the NBA.
Memphis is coming off Wednesday’s 121-107 win at Dallas as Morant had 21 points, shooting 10-for-12 from the field, with one three-pointer.
Meanwhile, the Sixers are coming off Thursday’s 112-101 loss at Milwaukee, a game in which Joel Embiid hit just 6 of 26 shots from the field, including 3 of 10 from three-point range, in scoring 19 points. Ben Simmons attempted only six shots, and Tobias Harris scored a team-high 25 points, making 5 of 6 threes.
Now 9-19 on the road, the Sixers are 22-2 at the Wells Fargo Center and own the fewest home losses in the NBA.
1 Kyle Anderson SF 6-9 5.0 ppg. 3.9 rpg.
13 Jaren Jackson Jr. PF 6-11 17.6 ppg. 4.7 rpg.
17 Jonas Valanciunas C 6-11 15.1 ppg. 10.3 rpg.
12 Ja Morant PG 6-2 17.4 ppg., 7.0 apg.
24 Dillon Brooks SG 6-7 16.1 ppg., 3.4 rpg.
Coach: Taylor Jenkins (first year, 26-25)
Injury report: Grayson Allen (left hip injury) is out. Jonas Valanciunas (left ankle soreness) is questionable.
12 Tobias Harris SF 6-9 19.1 ppg. 6.7 rpg.
42 Al Horford PF 6-9 12.4 ppg. 6.7 rpg.
21 Joel Embiid C 7-2 23.0 ppg. 12.1 rpg.
18 Shake Milton SG 6-5 6.9 ppg. 1.5 apg.
25 Ben Simmons PG 6-10 16.6 ppg. 8.2 apg.
Coach: Brett Brown (seventh season, 209-335)
Injury report: Josh Richardson (left hamstring strain), who was questionable, was cleared to play about an hour before the game. Richardson had missed the previous six games. Kyle O’Quinn (personal reasons) is out. Newcomers Alec Burks and Glenn Robinson III are not available.
Both teams have won 23 games.
On Dec. 2, 2018, the Sixers won a home game over Memphis, 103-95. The Sixers were led by JJ Redick, who scored 24 points and hit 3 of 6 three-pointers. Joel Embiid was held to 15 points, but Memphis at the time still had Marc Gasol, who has enjoyed success defending the Sixers’ three-time All-Star. Memphis was led by point guard Mike Conley, who scored 21 points but shot just 6-for-17 from the field.
Sunday: Chicago Bulls at Sixers, 6 p.m., NBC Sports Philadelphia
Tuesday: Los Angeles Clippers at Sixers, 7 p.m., TNT
Feb. 20: Brooklyn Nets at Sixers, 8 p.m., TNT
Feb 22: Sixers at Milwaukee Bucks, 8:30 p.m., ABC