The home crowd at Capital One Arena was supportive after not seeing NBA playoff basketball in three years, but the Washington Wizards still lost to the Philadelphia 76ers on Saturday night, 132-103.
Washington started off on the wrong foot allowing the 76ers to race to a 16-point lead early in the first quarter. While Washington was able to drop the deficit down to single digits multiple times, Philadelphia was in attack mode all game, especially Joel Embiid who scored 25 of his 36 points in the first half while playing just 27 minutes. He also shot 14-of-18 from the field.
The stats were just part of Embiid’s great performance. He even did a great job by getting key Wizards players to foul like Rui Hachimura and Daniel Gafford who had three fouls in the first half. And Embiid was even draining threes where he went 3-of-4 from deep.
The big fella with ease.@JoelEmbiid | #PhilaUnite pic.twitter.com/kKeXqiN6ym— Philadelphia 76ers (@sixers) May 29, 2021
After Philly shot 68.2 percent from the field in the third quarter, this game was effectively over. They shot 60.9 percent at that point, while the Wizards only shot 43.8 percent from the field. They were down by 23 after those three quarters so there really wasn’t much to write about.
In addition to Embiid, Ben Simmons continued his strong play with 14 points and 9 assists. Tobias Harris had 20 points and 10 points rebounds and he would have been a bigger story if Embiid wasn’t so dominant. Seth Curry and Danny Green added 15 points where they were responsible for dagger three after dagger three at the Wizards’ expense.
For Washington, they made some changes to the starting lineup with Davis Bertans in to get him going offensively. He scored 8 points on 2-of-6 shooting. A meh night. Russell Westbrook scored 26 points, grabbed 12 rebounds and dished 10 assists, not a bad performance after exiting Game 2 early due to an ankle injury. Bradley Beal added 25 points. Besides Gafford (12 points) and Rui Hachimura (10 points), there wasn’t much to write home about Washington’s performance. This team needs to put forth a better effort, especially now, with their season on the line.
The Wizards will continue their home stand on Monday in Game 4. Tip-off is at 7 p.m. ET. Let’s hope that Washington puts for a stronger effort, even if their season ends on Memorial Day.