Three Normal Things: Sixers Vs. Warriors
Three Normal Things
Adam Aaronson, whose legal name is Sixers Adam (@SixersAdam on Twitter), covers the Sixers for The Rights To Ricky Sanchez. He has been legally banned from covering the team in person, and when that ban was set to be lifted, Covid-19 struck. He believes cantaloupe is the best food in existence, and is brought to you by the Official Realtor of The Process, Adam Ksebe.
Welcome back to Three Normal Things! Let’s talk Sixers-Warriors.
#1: How George Hill will impact the rotation
Hill made his Sixers debut tonight as he returned from a hand injury that sidelined him for nearly three months. While we continue to wait for the arrivals of Glenn Robinson III and Alec Burks in their year-long travels to Philadelphia, Hill’s insertion to the rotation gives us some food for thought.
It won’t be clear until the entire roster is healthy for at least a few games, but it’s not hard to imagine things looking much different as Hill finds his way within the roster.
Tonight, with Ben Simmons and Tobias Harris sidelined, we saw Doc Rivers do something no Sixers coach had done in years -- Rivers went to multiple three-guard lineups, including Hill, who unlocks the ability to try it out because of his comfort level defending players above his size.
Ultimately, the quality of Hill’s play will determine how often he plays and whose minutes he eats up. But we have already seen one fashion in which he can be used that no other Sixer can say. And that in itself is very valuable.
#2: Joel Embiid continues to improve as a passer
Like most nights, Joel Embiid was facing hard double-teams tonight as soon as he touched the ball. Dealing with doubles and finding open teammates were some of Embiid’s biggest focuses during the offseason, and tonight we saw exactly how much better it can make the offense when Embiid is making all of the proper reads.
Embiid was not his best self as a scorer tonight -- though by normal standards, his line looks great, we know he is capable of more. Every star has those nights, and what separates the superstars is the ability to use ancillary skills they developed to impact the game as much as they can. That’s what Embiid did tonight with his passing, rebounding and defense.
#3: Shake Milton’s prolonged struggles remain
When this team gets fully healthy, a rotation crunch is going to be necessary. Right now, Shake Milton is doing himself no favors.
Obviously, Milton plays because of what he can do as a shooter and ball-handler to spark the offense. But as of late, he’s had very little to give. He’s had major difficulty creating separation from defenders, a signature skill of his offensive repertoire. His shots haven’t fallen, and he hasn’t been able to create for others much. We are nearing a pivotal point in Milton’s season -- either he gets back to the player he was late last year and early this year, or he sees his playing time decrease dramatically.