Tobias Harris, Joel Embiid not wrong at all about Sixers' 'toughness' deficit

Tobias Harris, Joel Embiid not wrong at all about Sixers’ ‘toughness’ deficit

There’s hardly unanimous settlement on what went incorrect as avid gamers let removing sink in.

That used to be true Thursday evening following the Sixers’ Recreation 6 defeat at Wells Fargo Heart to the Warmth.

For many groups, completing wanting a championship boils down to a few mixture of things inside avid gamers’ keep watch over and out of doors of it. Although the Sixers fall below that extensive umbrella, candid feedback in regards to the controllables jumped out.

No longer for the primary time, head trainer Document Rivers raised the subject of the Warmth’s awesome physicality. Tyrese Maxey idea the Sixers didn’t fit Miami’s “fight.” And Tobias Harris went additional in his postgame media consultation. With a voice nonetheless hoarse after he absorbed Recreation 4 touch to the throat by way of Warmth giant guy Bam Adebayo, Harris defined why he believes the Sixers can’t crack the second one spherical.

“Mental toughness,” he stated. “I believe so. Simply psychological toughness. That a part of it, I don’t suppose we now have but. Seeing the Milwaukee sport the previous day (towards the Celtics), that’s a workforce that’s been during the fireplace, having the ability to struggle and stay going. Now and then for our workforce, too many stuff simply affected us as a complete. We drop our heads an excessive amount of. Our frame language now and then is crappy. We wanted that to be higher during this sequence. And I believe that harm us on this sequence.

“Our mental toughness for sure hurt us against that group. And they did a lot of things to kind of challenge that — the hustle plays, the 50-50 basketballs, everything. The physicality by them, as well. We needed to be better as a collective group at just holding our head and just fighting, just going right back at it. And I don’t think we did a great job of that.”

 

Harris’ observations aren’t absurdly off the mark. The Sixers did reply effectively now and then this yr to losses that may have deflated different groups. They didn’t fall apart all over a difficult, bizarre Ben Simmons business saga. And so they discovered techniques to win giant video games revolving across the solar of Joel Embiid, their MVP runner-up heart who no doubt exhibited “toughness” in lacking simply two postseason video games all over a playoff marketing campaign by which he suffered a torn ligament in his proper thumb, a concussion, and a proper orbital fracture.

However the Sixers had vital moments by which focal point, depth, and different outdated intangibles had been large issues. They misplaced Recreation 5 of the Miami sequence by way of 35 issues and one thing identical would possibly had been at the desk if no longer for a powerful particular person 2nd part by way of Shake Milton in Recreation 6.

The workforce trailed by way of 20 issues at one degree and allowed the Warmth to seize seven extra offensive rebounds within the sport (13-6). On every occasion the Sixers hinted at a run, Jimmy Butler driven that concept out of the image.

“It’s not simple to fix,” Harris stated. “However I believe it simply comes with the intent. Each guy to himself, the intent you move into the sport with, the power you return into the sport with. I believe that’s an enormous a part of it.

“And that’s something that I will say, throughout this year, we’ve shown in many games how great we can be. And we’ve shown when things are good how mentally tough we are. I think on the flip side of that, we didn’t do a great job of that when things weren’t going our way.”

Clearly, a lot of the Sixers’ loss will also be attributed to problems with ability and good fortune. Embiid’s accidents made a large have an effect on. And the minimum time to combine James Harden doesn’t account for each side of his scoreless Recreation 6 2nd part, however the cases — 33 overall video games for the 10-time All-Famous person in his first yr with the workforce, and at not up to one hundred pc well being — do topic there.

Georges Niang, a fiery, trash-talking bench ahead Rivers had known as the workforce’s “emotional leader” this yr, suited up with an injured left knee and used to be a ways from his regular-season self. Throughout defeats in Video games 1, 5 and six, Niang shot 0 for 14 from three-point vary in 53 mins and scored no issues.

As for Harris, he dedicated to defensive growth and adapting his sport after Harden’s arrival to incorporate extra catch-and-shoot three-pointers and complementary contributions.

 

However the truth is Harris doesn’t resemble Butler in the case of being world-class at keen himself anyplace he desires to move at the courtroom. Harris made an and-one layup within the fourth quarter of Recreation 2. From that time on within the sequence, he tried 50 box objectives and nil unfastened throws.

Embiid recognized physicality and rebounding as problematic. Certainly, the Sixers had been remaining in offensive rebounding share this season, according to Cleansing the Glass. Keeping off turnovers and drawing foul photographs looked to be key sides in their id with out Simmons, in large part as a result of they frequently misplaced the rebounding combat and had been brief on essentially disruptive defenders that would knock opposing offenses out in their most popular movements.

Embiid didn’t evade the query of whether or not the Sixers want to upload toughness.

“For sure,” he stated. “We had a couple of tricky guys since I’ve been right here that I will be able to recall, whether or not it’s Mike Scott … he didn’t play numerous mins. However if in case you have dimension and toughness, that is going some distance. You have a look at any individual like P.J. Tucker — nice participant, however it’s no longer about him flattening photographs. It’s about (the opposite issues) he does, whether or not it’s at the defensive finish or rebounding the ball. You have a look at (him) defensively, he performs with such a lot power. He believes that he can get from Level A to Level B, and he believes that nobody can beat him.

“And he’s tough. He’s just physical and he’s tough. They have a few of those guys, whether it’s Bam and all those guys. And since I’ve been here, I would be lying if I said that we’ve had those type of guys. Nothing against what we have, it’s just the truth. We never have P.J. Tucker; that’s really what I’m trying to say. So I think physicality, especially once you get to the playoffs or the later rounds, you need that. You need those guys that are really tough.”

Once more, the Sixers are grappling with uncomfortable questions for an unlimited collection of causes. 

However sure, Harris and Embiid made compelling instances Thursday evening that toughness used to be an integral one.

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