Rozier, Tatum help Celtics beat 76ers in Game 1

Rozier, Tatum help Celtics beat 76ers in Game 1

Rozier, Tatum help Celtics beat 76ers in Game 1

The Celtics drained 17 three-pointers while the Sixers made just 5-of-26 from beyond the arc.

Crucially, the Celtics did a great job of stopping Simmons' bull-rush dribble penetration - a ferocious attack that collapses the defense, drawing weak-side defenders away from their marks on the 3-point line. It's nearly impossible to win a playoff game in 2018 when someone who started the season as a backup point guard makes more threes than your whole team.

Embiid and the Sixers will get a chance to avenge this loss, of course. "If it takes for us to jaw back and forth and battle and push each other, it's whatever.it's just part of the game".

"We give them credit".

Philly's path to evening the series and regaining its balance and sense of self starts with more purposeful play from its franchise center.

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Rozier is averaging a team-high 36 minutes per game in the playoffs.

That must change for the Sixers to move on.

Embiid scored 31 points with 13 rebounds for Philadelphia, which lost for just the second time in 22 games.

That trio went 0-for-11. "They're very mindful of the perimeter", Brown explained.

Of course, no one reasonable would make the case that Tatum deserves the award over Simmons based on a one-game sample size, or even that Tatum has a brighter future after one brilliant performance. The expectation was Fultz would step in alongside Simmons and handle pick-and-roll responsibilities as well as some of the off-ball spacing. "He's gonna have to play like that for the rest of his time, the rest of the series, in order for us to keep going the way we're going".

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Game 2 is Thursday night in Boston.

There are problems with that plan.

Heading into the series, Baynes looked like the Celtics' best option of slowing down Joel Embiid. "It's the first game, that's why it's a series", Ben Simmons said. Horford had four of the five baskets and assisted on the other. "That can't happen. He's a pretty good shooter and you have to respect that". They were leading 29-27 early in the second quarter and looked to have survived an impressive start from the Celtics. They held the Sixers to 19.2 percent. This was a poor game from us. "Obviously, those few days off weren't the best for us and it is good that we took the lesson now rather than later". By virtue of his unique mix of size and skill, he can get his little hook shot or mid-range jumper anytime. The Celtics can nearly certainly survive Embiid scoring 30 points, if they restrict the arsenal of shooters deployed around him.

As for the contingent of Sixers fans that now cringes when Covington pulls up? The Celtics got big nights from Terry Rozier and Al Horford and a particularly noteworthy performance from Jayson Tatum.

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