Sixers' loss in Cleveland much more than simply another defeat

Dave Uram
February 27, 2020 - 11:11 am
Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (21) stares back at the court after diving out of bounds into the 76ers bench during the first half against the Cleveland Cavaliers at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse.

Ken Blaze/USA TODAY Sports

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — The Sixers' 108-94 loss at the Cleveland Cavaliers was a punch in the gut for a team fighting for better playoff positioning — and for its fans, who loyally follow an often frustrating product.

The loss put the 76ers at 36-23 in the season and prevented them from jumping the Miami Heat for fourth in the East. But this was so much more than simply another defeat.

Embiid injured again

Late in the first quarter, Joel Embiid's left shoulder collided with Cleveland's Ante Zizic, putting the big guy in obvious discomfort. He was done for the night, having played only eight minutes. And with Ben Simmons already sidelined for nerve impingement in his lower back, the Sixers were left without their two All-Stars.

Related: Joel Embiid sprains shoulder, Sixers lose to Cavs 108-94

Embiid told The Inquirer that he’s going to get an MRI on Thursday. The Sixers host the Knicks Thursday night. As of Wednesday night, head coach Brett Brown wasn’t sure of his center’s status.

Harris, Horford and Richardson came up small

Being down your two best players obviously isn’t optimum, but the 76ers are paying Tobias Harris and Al Horford a lot of money, and Josh Richardson is very capable of putting up decent numbers as well.

The three of them combined for 30 points on 12-of-35 from the floor.

That’s beyond unacceptable, especially with Embiid and Simmons out.

Road Issues

The loss put the Sixers at a dismal 9-21 on the road, which is the worst away mark for any team currently in the playoff picture.

It was their seventh road loss in a row, and 13th in their last 15 games not in South Philadelphia.

They did not win a single road game in February, and they won’t.

Simply put, regardless of their 27-2 record at Wells Fargo Center, things appear to be unravelling for your professional basketball team.