76ers vs. Pacers: Live Updates From Sixers' Season Restart
The time has finally come. For the first time since the memorable night of March 11, the Philadelphia 76ers will play meaningful basketball with a matchup against the Indiana Pacers. Months ago, it was unclear if the Sixers were going to conclude the 2019-2020 season with actual closure.
But now it's confirmed they will. Beginning on Saturday, August 1, the Sixers and the Pacers will compete in the first of eight seeding games. The sixth-place Sixers will have an opportunity to move up to the fifth seed in the East as early as Saturday night with a win over the Pacers, who currently hold a tie-breaker over Philly.
While the Sixers are no longer worried about competing for a spot in the playoffs, the team can move up a couple of spots in the Eastern Conference's rank during these final eight games. Here, we'll offer up live updates regarding tonight's matchup throughout the day, beginning with Brett Brown's pregame press conference and going all the way through to the end of the game.
Philadelphia 76ers vs. Indiana Pacers
Time: 7:00 PM EST.
Location: Orlando, Florida
Odds: Sixers -5.5, O/U 213
Broadcast: NBC Sports Philadelphia+
Sixers Injury Report
- Joel Embiid (calf): Not Listed, will play vs. Pacers
- Raul Neto (back): Probable
- Glenn Robinson III (hip): Doubtful
Pacers Injury Report
- Goga Bitadze (knee): Questionable
- Malcolm Brogdon (cervical strain): Out
- Jeremy Lamb (knee): Out
- Domantas Sabonis (foot): Out
- Victor Oladipo (quad): Questionable
Indiana Injury Update
Victor Oladipo, who considered opting out of the NBA's restart in Orlando will play for the Pacers this summer after all. Oladipo will be in the Pacers' starting lineup on Saturday night against the Sixers. However, the Pacers will have him on a minutes restriction -- so he's expected to play around 28-30 minutes.
Sixers Injury Update
Glenn Robinson III will not play on Saturday night. The veteran wing injured his hip during the second scrimmage game last Sunday and was listed as doubtful heading into Saturday night's restart. As expected, he will miss the first seeding game.
In addition to Robinson III, Sixers veteran wing Mike Scott is also listed as out for Saturday. Scott was added to the injury report on Saturday afternoon as he's been dealing with knee soreness. Now, he will miss the first game as well. Meanwhile, Raul Neto, who was listed as probable is available to play.
Brett Brown's Pregame Notes
- "It's going to be difficult for us to maximize what we can do without Al being Al," Brown said in regards to the veteran big man, Al Horford. "Look at what he's done the month before the season was cut short. Look at what he's done here even in our scrimmages, I think that's trending the way he wants and what we want."
- Brown said he wants to make sure that Joel Embiid and the Sixers have "the paint" in mind offensively as much as they can. As for Ben Simmons, Brown is looking forward to seeing his rebounding on both sides of the ball. "On defense, when he rebounds the ball, there's no better dribble out guy in the league then Ben Simmons," Brown claimed. "He's a freight train -- a runaway train."
- Brown hopes the 76ers show a "unified message" tonight before the game. "It's not something that we take lightly," he said. "We've been talking about this as a team for many many months. I think that tonight, we're not first in relation to playing a basketball game -- but tonight encompasses many things, but none more are important than supporting the desire of our players."
- Joel Embiid hasn't really had limitations in practice throughout the week. Brown revealed that two days ago, he competed in a highly competitive practice. Tonight, Brown anticipates the big man drawing a lot of double teams from the Pacers.
- What happened with Mike Scott? "To be truthful, all I know is that he woke up and [his knee] was sore," Brown said. "I listened to the people who advise me and along with that they told me he was not going to go tonight."
Sixers' Starting Lineup
PG: Shake Milton
SG: Josh Richardson
SF: Tobias Harris
PF: Ben Simmons
C: Joel Embiid
Tobias Harris Will Wear a Jersey Message
Earlier this week, the NBA announced which players planned to wear a social justice message on their jersey. When the list came out, six 76ers were listed. Tobias Harris was not included, but it looks like he's decided to change his mind and will wear "Say Her Name" on the back of his jersey.
Players and Coaches Kneel During Anthem
As expected, Philadelphia 76ers players and coaches locked arms and kneeled during the National Anthem. The Indiana Pacers and game referees joined them as well.
76ers Looking Sharp on Offense Early
Unlike the first few scrimmage games, the 76ers look pretty sharp early on the offensive side of the ball. The Sixers take a 10-4 lead early with Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid, and Tobias Harris getting on the board with a couple of baskets. It could be a long night for Indiana, who has a size disadvantage.
Furkan Korkmaz Getting Early Minutes
Well, it turns out Furkan Korkmaz's three-game scrimmage didn't affect his spot in the rotation for the seeding games. Although he had three rough games shooting just 21-percent from three, Korkmaz is the first player to come in as a substitute for the Sixers.
Still Sharp? Not so Much
So much for the Sixers looking sharp early. Indiana just went on a 9-0 run, taking advantage of the Sixers' sloppiness on offense. The Pacers are currently in the lead now as the Sixers are struggling to produce right now.
An Al Horford-Joel Embiid Lineup Sighting
Sixers fans probably won't like this too much, but Al Horford and Joel Embiid are currently sharing the floor together. Although Brett Brown didn't test many lineups involving them both during practice, Horford made it clear two weeks ago that they will play together at some points -- that's just the way it goes.
END OF FIRST QUARTER. PACERS LEAD SIXERS 35-29
Shake Milton and Joel Embiid Getting Heated
After a rough first quarter for everybody -- especially Shake Milton, there appears to be some issues between Milton and Joel Embiid during the first intermission. It's unclear what the exchange was about. It could have something to do with Milton's costly mistake before the quarter ended. Once former Sixers' guard T.J. McConnell checked into the game, he came up with two critical steals on Milton.
Raul Neto is in the Rotation
A bit of a surprise here. The Sixers seemed to favor Josh Richardson as the backup point guard and even gave Alec Burks some opportunities to bring the ball up during the scrimmages. However, it looks like Brett Brown is willing to give Raul Neto some playing time even after he missed two out of three scrimmage games with an injury.
Alec Burks is Making an Early Impact
The two trade acquisitions from Golden State had a slow start with the Sixers before the NBA went on a hiatus. Alec Burks and Glenn Robinson III both believed they would benefit from having some additional time to find their fit with the team during the suspension. So far, Burks is looking good coming off the Sixers' bench and knocking down both of his three-point attempts.
The T.J's are Doing Work on the Sixers
Before, I mentioned that T.J. McConnell was giving the Sixers a hard time as he came in and instantly grabbed two steals. However, T.J. Warren is giving the Sixers a fit. In just 13 minutes of action right now, Warren has 21 of the Pacers' 42 points. So far, the Sixers just don't have an answer for the forward.
Turnovers are an Issue
The Sixers have 14 turnovers through almost two quarters. The Pacers, meanwhile, have just three. As they are failing to take care of the ball, the 76ers are getting frustrated and not really developing any sort of rhythm.
Where's the Energy?
Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer is in the building down in Orlando. As there are no fans in attendance, teams are expected to bring their own energy from the bench. So far, the Sixers are failing to do that.
END OF SECOND QUARTER. PACERS LEAD SIXERS 61-55.
Raul Neto Gets the Second Half Start Over Milton
All but one starter is in the Sixers' lineup for the start of the third quarter. Shake Milton, who had a rough outing so far, is the odd-man-out. During the first half, Milton had three turnovers and had zero points on offense. Also, he currently has four fouls. So Brett Brown is going with the veteran Raul Neto at point guard to start the second half.
*Correction: Milton got an immediate foul and came out of the game.
Philly's Back in Front
Indiana has pretty much been in control all game long, but the 76ers have climbed back a couple of times. Midway through the third quarter, the Sixers pick up a one-point lead, 65-64. Both, Tobias Harris and Joel Embiid have 17 points. We'll see if Philly can minimize the turnovers and slow down T.J. Warren in the second half.
Tobias Harris' Hotstreak Continues
Through the Sixers' first three scrimmage games, Tobias Harris was consistently producing the most on offense for the 76ers. That hot streak was no fluke. Once again, Harris has been a man on a mission for the Sixers as he leads the team with 22 points.
END OF THIRD QUARTER. SIXERS LEAD PACERS 87-81.
Joel Embiid is Feeling Good
If anybody was worried about Embiid coming into the first seeding game looking rusty, worry no more. On offense, he's taking advantage of the height mismatch against the Pacers. At this point, he's got 31 points and 17 rebounds.
Embiid to the Locker Room?
Okay, maybe he's not feeling so good. Embiid was spotted walking out of the mini-arena the Sixers are playing in. It's unclear what happened to him, so it doesn't seem to be anything too serious.
The Update on Embiid
After heading to the locker room for a little, Embiid is back on the bench and is reportedly fine and there are no further updates. It sounds like he'll be back in the game to close this one out for the Sixers.
T.J. Warren Continues to Cook
While the Sixers might've been slightly worried about Victor Oladipo getting the green light to play tonight, T.J. Warren came ready to ball. In almost 40 minutes of action, Warren continues to build on his career-high. Currently, he has 47 points and is showing no signs of slowing down.
So This Happened...
END OF GAME. PACERS DEFEAT SIXERS 127-121.