Jrue Holiday scored 8 points in the 4th quarter to give the 76ers an 82-75 win, sending the series back to Boston for the penultimate game seven on Saturday.
Holiday finished with 20 points and 6 assists in a game that couldn’t end soon enough. Boston shot a mind-numbingly bad 33%, only staying close to Philly by controlling the boards (Rondo had 5 offensive rebounds by himself), and by actually making their free throws. Philly, which was in the presence of Allen Iverson, apparently decided that practicing free throws was too hard. (They went 17-28 on the night)
The game was won in the third quarter, where both teams figured out that playing offense wasn’t illegal. The Sixers actually looked competent, capitalizing on Boston’s multiple miscues. Plus, this happened in the quarter. Anytime Paul Pierce gets dunked on is a good time.
Another important aspect from this game is that Boston still had a shot to win this game despite shooting so poorly. KG missed open jumpers. Brandon Bass missed open jumpers. Ray Allen was in foul trouble, and then went 1-5 on three pointers. There is no way that this happens again in Boston. If Philadelphia wants to have a shot in game seven, they’re going to have to fight through the screens and not cheat off the jump shooters so much.
Obviously, the implications of Philly winning this game are huge for the entire Eastern Conference. Not only does this go to a game seven with Boston missing Avery Bradley, but this could give the Heat more time to rest Chris Bosh if they close out the Pacers on Thursday in Indianapolis. If Miami does win it’s series AND gets Bosh back, then they might as well not even play the Eastern Conference Finals; just let them play the Thunder/Spurs winner. Neither of these teams is really good enough to compete with the Heat, and really would just be wasting everyone’s time.
Series tied 3-3, next game @Boston on Saturday