Wizards stars Bradley Beal and Russell Westbrook lost 2-0 to the Sixers in their playoff series in the first round.
Washington Wizards star Bradley Beal has 66 points in his first two playoff games. It seems like the Philadelphia 76ers let him score while focusing their defensive power elsewhere. This is not the case, according to Doc Rivers.
The Sixers’ head coach laughed at the idea that they were not focusing on Beal. They switched their best defenders against him, including Ben Simmons and Matisse Thybulle. Nothing worked. Beal is just “a tough guy to deal with”.
“We the hell are guarding him and he’s still shooting. Bradley Beal is tough on the bottom line,” Rivers said. “We’d prefer if he doesn’t score and we stop everyone else, that obviously didn’t work. “Bradley had good offensive games, but I know we can get him to work. I see it in the movie.”
Beal has one combined in 76 minutes Scored 27 on 51 goals (52.9%) with an average of 33 points per game. These numbers are significantly higher than his seasonal averages – field goal percentage (48.5%), points per game (31, 3) – but the Sixers locked him out of the deep where he went 2:12 (16.6%). Beal went 130-for-373 (38.5%) during the regular season.
Bradley Beal averaged 37 points at 68% TS against the Sixers this season. The Sixers won all 3 games.
“I know we can get him to get a lot of twos to take, which was also good. But he does it, “said Rivers.” Which just tells you that you can sometimes plan anything you want against some of these great guys, but they can still score. But as long as they score and it’s difficult [for them] and you’re all defending everyone else, you’ve got a nice shot at it. “
Tobias Harris was a one-man wreck crew in the playoffs. He went for a career playoff high of 37 points in Game 1 and then scored an efficient 19 points in Game 2. He has worked in many different ways: from dribbling, in paint, on the low block. Harris also improved his middle class game every day after training with his “sparring partners” (Paul Reed, Rayjon Tucker). He punished the wizards with his ability to stand up and shoot over smaller guards.
Tobias Harris says his two “sparring partners” are Rayjon Tucker and Paul Reed. They got extra work after training, like 1-on-1 matchups in the mail. #Sixer #HereTheyCome
“For me it was very important to be better equipped and ready to end up on the edge. I think that opened up a lot of things for me this year, ”said Harris. “Finishing versus contact and getting my spots was the biggest thing I worked on in the off-season. Find out where my spots were on the floor and make the game easier. “
Harris added that his new favorite area to attack is on the low block. His speed is deadly down there, especially when the defense has to choose between guarding him or Joel Embiid.
“A bit like that one-two, right there, so I think that helped us,” Harris said of himself and Embiid. “So, all of these things add up, and if you’re out there as a team, playing with people who add to your game in a good way, it certainly helps with that improvement, too.”
As Matisse Thybulle told reporters, Several people scratched their heads that Furkan Korkmaz is one of his best friends on the team. One (Thybulle) is a defender, the other (Korkmaz) is a light-off shooter. One (Thybulle) grew up in Seattle (via Australia and Arizona), the other (Korkmaz) comes from Turkey. It might sound like a strange pairing, but the two of them really have fun together.
“When he said something about his life, something serious, I think people get together more, that’s what happened to Matisse this year” said Korkmaz. “We get together, friendlier, he’s a really good guy, I’m happy to be with him. He makes me happy, he makes me smile every day.”
“Furk is my brother. We got a lot closer this year. Furk is a good guy and probably one of my best friends. “
They also try to improve each other’s individual basketball games, with Thybulle (obviously) giving Korkmaz defensive tips and Turkish star Thybulle helping with the shooting.
“I really like his defense mentality,” said Korkmaz. “We talk about attack, we talk about defense and we make sure we do it perfectly.”