In a battle between the Curry brothers, the older brother stole the show. Stephen Curry’s Golden State Warriors beat the Philadelphia 76ers, 107-96.
Curry was unbelievable scoring 49 points on 14-for-28 shooting (10-for-17 from three-point range) in the win.
The younger Curry brother, Seth, scored all 15 of his points in the first half. Joel Embiid led the Sixers with 28 points on eight-for-21 shooting, 13 rebounds, and eight assists.
The Sixers were shorthanded, though, as Ben Simmons (illness) and Tobias Harris (right knee soreness) were both out.
Here’s the three takeaways:
Curry show in the first-half
Out of everyone to defend Stephen Curry with Simmons sidelined, Seth Curry was not the first that came to mind. He had the initial assignment to guard Steph, and he was actually better than his brother in the opening few minutes of their matchup.
Seth drained a pull-up jumper for the game’s first points, and he converted a confident three-pointer in transition to give the team a 7-0 lead.
With his steal of a behind-the-back pass from the two-time MVP and ensuing fast-break layup, the Sixers earned a 12-0 lead.
Matisse Thybulle had early issues when he checked in to guard Steph, who was aware that Thybulle is spectacular at steals and blocks.
On one impressive first-quarter play, Curry sprinted around a screen, pump faked, waited for Thybulle to fly past him and then drained a three. Thybulle’s night improved from there. He provided his typical off-ball defensive spark and posted 13 points, three steals, and a block.
Steph punished the Sixers’ mistakes — players getting caught on ball screens, giving him driving lanes, etc. — and the making an error wasn’t as difficult with Simmons out.
Heading into Monday’s game, Curry had averaged 40.4 points and shot 49.6% from three-point range over his last eight games, so this was routine for him, which is crazy to say.
Embiid against the Warriors’ small ball
Monday night was a good practice for Embiid against both small-ball lineups and double teams.
With James Wiseman out for the season due to a right meniscus tear, Golden State started 6-foot-9 Kevon Looney and played 6-foot-6 Draymond Green at backup center.
Facing regular double teams is now almost an every-game occurrence for Embiid, who shot 14 free throws but often was forced to respond to aggressive help defense by searching for an open teammate or taking a difficult jumper.
The Warriors understandably wanted to avoid one-on-one situations against Embiid.
Embiid had several nice cross-court feeds and generally identified the right pass quickly. Still, the Warriors guarded him just about as well as they could have and stopped him down the stretch.
Sixers debut for Hill
George Hill checked in the game with 3:05 left in the first quarter, his first NBA minutes since Jan. 24 after a long rehab process following a right thumb surgery.
As was expected, he wasn’t his sharpest, with a lob to Dwight Howard that would perhaps have been fine for an 11-foot player, but not for 6-foot-11 Howard.
Anyways, Tyrese Maxey contributed positively for a second straight game, scoring eight of his 10 points in the fourth quarter. Milton had a rough outing, shooting one-for-seven from the floor.
The 39-18 Sixers’ next game is Wednesday night vs. the 41-16 Phenix Suns.