NBA Basketball
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106
Final 1 2 3 4 Tot
Philadelphia 26 30 23 27 106
Miami 26 35 22 19 102
102
11:30 AM PT12:30 PM MT1:30 PM CT2:30 PM ET18:30 GMT2:30 11:30 AM MST1:30 PM EST22:30 UAE20:3014:30 ET1:30 PM CTNaN:� , April 21, 2018
AmericanAirlines Arena, Miami, Florida  Attendance: 19,804

Heat have work cut out vs. surging Sixers

According to STATS
According to STATS

Philadelphia 76ers at Miami Heat

  1. Philadelphia outscored Miami by 18 in the fourth quarter (32-14) to defeat the Heat, 128-108, in Game 3 and take a 2-1 series lead. The 76ers' 361 points so far in the playoffs are the most by any NBA team in the first three games of the postseason since the Phoenix Suns scored 368 through three in the 1994 postseason.
  2. The 76ers made 18 three-pointers in the victory, the second time this series they've done that (also Game 1). Philadelphia is the first team to make 18 or more three-pointers in a postseason's opening round all-time.
  3. The Heat's 108 points in Game 3 were their second most in a playoff loss all-time (lost, 119-114, to the Bulls in Game 3 of the 1992 First Round). This is only the seventh time out of 20 First Round series that the Heat have trailed (or been swept) through three games.
  4. Ben Simmons recorded 60 points, 30 rebounds and 29 assists through his first three playoff games. Russell Westbrook (2017 -- 105 points, 33 rebounds, 31 assists) and Rajon Rondo (2009 -- 68 points, 32 rebounds, 29 assists) are the only other players to match Simmons' totals through the first three games of the playoffs in the last 30 seasons.
  5. Justise Winslow recorded 19 points and 10 rebounds off the bench in Game 3. He is the first Heat player to record a double-double as a reserve in the postseason since Udonis Haslem in Game 4 of the 2012 Eastern Conference Finals.
  6. Dario Saric has scored at least 20 points in each game this series, only the second time in his career that he's scored 20 or more points in three consecutive games (also December 28-31, 2017). He is the first 76ers player to score at least 20 points in his first three career playoff games since Julius Erving in the 1977 postseason (first five games).
(Photo by Eric Espada/Getty Images)

MIAMI -- Philadelphia 76ers reserve guard Justin Anderson scored six points on Thursday, but he played a major role nonetheless in a 128-108 playoff win over the Miami Heat.

It was Anderson who worked on the psyche of teammate Joel Embiid, the 76ers' All-Star center who returned after missing 10 straight games because of a concussion and left-eye injury.

"Justin was hyping me up on the bench, telling me I'm one of the best players in the league and that I have to take over," said Embiid, who wore a mask during the game. "I liked that."

Embiid, with that added boost of confidence, produced 23 points, seven rebounds, four assists and three blocks in 30 minutes. He missed his first five shots from the floor and then made five of his next six, including three 3-pointers.

In addition, Embiid made 10 of 15 free throws, wrapping up his highly successful NBA playoff debut.

On Saturday afternoon, the teams will meet again at AmericanAirlines Arena in a first-round series the Heat trails 2-1.

Certainly, the Heat will try to corral Embiid, but Miami gave its own star center, Hassan Whiteside, just 13 minutes on Thursday, in part because of foul trouble.

Whiteside produced just five points, two rebounds and one block. He made his only shots from the field, but his four fouls helped to keep him off the court.

"I want to get more minutes," said Whiteside, who led the NBA with 3.7 blocks in 2015-2016 and with 14.1 rebounds last season. "Even with the fouls, I could've been out there. I would not have fouled out."

This season, Whiteside is averaging 14.0 points, 11.4 rebounds and 1.7 blocks. But, on average, his minutes per game are down seven minutes from last season and even more in the playoffs.

Whiteside said Heat coach Erik Spoelstra "wants me to just be in a corner and set picks."

Spoelstra, meanwhile, said "it's part of my job to figure out how he can get to his strengths and make an impact on defense and rebounding."

Aside from the two centers, the other big story line in this series revolves around the 76ers, a young team that won 18 of its past 19 games. After years of horrendous records amid a major teardown and rebuild effort, the 76ers have looked like the best team in the league during the past month.

They didn't just beat the Heat on Thursday -- they ran them over, making 18 of 34 3-pointers (52.9 percent). They also shot 50.6 percent overall and were plus-eight on rebounds and plus-14 on paint points.

Ben Simmons, the 76ers' star point guard, nearly had a triple-double with 19 points, a game-high 12 rebounds and seven assists.

JJ Redick, one of the top shooters in the league, scored just 10 points, but 76ers teammates Dario Saric and Marco Belinelli each scored 21 points and each hit four 3-pointers to help the offense flow.

Miami was led by 23 points and eight assists from point guard Goran Dragic. Heat reserve forward Justise Winslow scored a season-high 19 points and grabbed 10 rebounds. But Miami's top three shooting guards -- Tyler Johnson, Dwyane Wade and Wayne Ellington -- combined for just 21 points.

The game's biggest factor was Embiid, who had been listed as unlikely to play until Thursday afternoon, when he was cleared by doctors.

Embiid had a 7-0 run in the fourth quarter, which continued a trend. In Philadelphia's two wins in this series, they have outscored the Heat by 31 and 21 points, respectively.

Anderson said Embiid has been a team player throughout.

"One of the things (Embiid) told me during (Thursday's) game was to tell Coach that he didn't want any plays run for him," Anderson said. "He just wanted to play within the scheme."

Updated April 21, 2018

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