Night of mixed emotions the one that the Cameroonian pivot had to live Joel embiid, who saw how the Serbian Nikola Jokic snatched the league’s Most Valuable Player (MVP) award. On the track, with the Philadelphia Sixers, he once again became the great figure of his team and scored 40 points who led the Atlanta Hawks to a 118-102 victory in the second game of the Eastern Conference semifinals to tie the tie.
The victory was the Sixers’ first in the best-of-seven series after being beaten in the first and losing the field advantage now held by the Hawks, who return to Atlanta, where the next two games will be played starting Friday. .
Embiid also finished with a double-double by grabbing 13 rebounds., gave 2 assists, recovered 2 balls, lost 3, put a stopper and played 35 minutes, without allowing the Swiss pivot Clint Capela, which ended with 10 points and 8 rebounds it could be a winning factor for the rival.
If it was the forward Tobias Harris who once again became a major force in the Sixers attack by getting 22 points and finish as the second best scorer, in addition to capturing 6 rebounds and distributing 4 assists.
Also the escort Seth curry He was once again the Sixers’ most effective player in shooting from outside the perimeter and contributed 21 points after scoring 5 of 6 3-point attempts, of the 12 that the Philadelphia team achieved.
Curry hit his first five triples until he missed one late in the third period.
The scoring inspiration from Embiid, Harris and Curry compensated for the bad night who had the Australian base Ben simmons, who barely reached 4 points, but after having made only three shots to the basket, and distributed 7 assists.
The actions of the Sixers occurred after the game had the legendary Julius Erving as the protagonist of the ceremonial act of the beginning.
In addition to Simmons, he came onto the field wearing an Iverson jersey, while Embiid is the seventh Sixers player with at least 10 career 30-plus playoff games.
But it would be the reserve escort Shake Milton who emerged as a surprise factor Sixers winner by getting 14 points, including a triple that made it possible for the Philadelphia team in the end to break the score in their favor.
Milton had been the sixth man for one stretch of the course, but then lost his spot in the rotation and scored 3.4 points per game in the previous tie against the Wizards.
The Sixers coach, Doc Rivers kept the faith and Milton punished the Hawks and he helped the Sixers mount a 14-0 streak that opened the game in their favor and lifted the Philadelphia team’s fans from their seats, who once again filled the stands at Wells Fargo Arena.
Milton didn’t play in the first half, but scored a long distance triple before the horn sounded that sent the Sixers into the fourth quarter with a 91-84 lead. He went ahead with a jump shot early in the fourth quarter for the 95-84 quarter, which would be decisive.
Embiid jumped off the bench and went crazy and he was the first to greet Milton before a time-out. Milton received a standing ovation shortly after when he left the game with the Sixers up 114-97. His 14 minutes were the most valuable of the second game of the series.
This time there was no surprise as it happened in the first game nor did they allow the Hawks to have a 26-point advantage, which was what the loss cost the Sixers.
Embiid had also proved his worth throughout the season, but not to surpass Serbian center Nikola Jokic in the choice of the Most Valuable Player (MVP) award, which was awarded this Tuesday by NBA Commissioner Adam Silver .
The base Trae Young scored 21 points for the Hawks, but he was far from the barrier of 35 and 10 assists that he contributed in the first game of the tie that they won at home by 124-128.
The Italian power forward Danilo Gallinari scored 21 points as the second highest scorer and the guard Kevin Huerter had another 20 after he made his first eight shots from the field and all three triples in three quarters.
As in the first game, the Sixers reserves were unable to keep the game competitive. The five bench players used in the first half went over to under with the point guard. George Hill and the turkish forward Furkan korkmaz without being able to define before the rival basket and Atlanta recovered on the scoreboard.
Huerter and Gallinari made back-to-back triples that helped the Hawks go 57-55 at halftime.
Young made a pair of free throws in the third for Atlanta’s first lead, 79-80.
But then would come the inspiration of Milton, who had not been well in the elimination against the Washington Wizards in the first round, with just 3.4 points on average, but scored a triple and there changed the story of the game for the 82-80 quarter.
Then came the triples that lifted Sixers fans off their seats and Young, the best player of the postseason, was limited to 11 points at the half after scoring 25 in the first half of the first game.
The difference was the defense of Simmons, a finalist for the Defensive Player of the Year award, who found a way to nullify Young, something that guard Danny Green had not been able to do in the first game.
Everything was positive for the Sixers, except that Embiid was left without the MVP award And the last Philadelphia team player to win it was former point guard Allen Iverson in 2001.