76ers

Sixers-Raptors: What you need to know

978959.jpg

Sixers-Raptors: What you need to know

Sixers vs. Raptors 7 p.m., CSN
Air Canada Centre, Toronto

Last meeting
The Sixers overcame a seven-point deficit in the fourth quarter to roll to a 106-98 victory over the Raptors on Nov. 20 at the Wells Fargo Center. Jrue Holiday paced the Sixers with 19 points and 12 assists while Nick Young led the way with 23 points, 10 in the decisive fourth quarter. Young also had a season-high four assists.

Its all part of the Swaggy P movement, Young said after the game while wearing a sweatshirt that read, Swaggy P, which he says was given to him by a fan. They were double-teaming me, so I just hit the open man.

Andrea Bargnani and DeMar DeRozen combined for 46 points

Records
Sixers: 15-21 (fourth place in Atlantic Division)

Raptors: 12-22 (fifth place in Atlantic Division)

Previous games
The Sixers face their fourth back-to-back in a row. This time they travel to Toronto a night after ending an eight-game road trip with their fourth straight loss. On Tuesday night, the Sixers trailed the Nets by a point at the half but were hit with an 18-2 Brooklyn run to start the third in a 109-89 defeat.

It was the third straight game in which the Sixers allowed exactly 109 points and lost by 20 or more points.

Toronto had won eight of nine before dropping its last two straight. Last time out, the Raptors took a 104-92 loss to Oklahoma City, despite Alan Anderson's 27 points off the bench.

Who's hot
Jrue Holiday had 19 points and eight assists on Tuesday night on 7-for-11 shooting, and went 3 of 3 from three-point land. Over the last 10 games, Holiday has averaged 18.5 points and nearly nine assists and five rebounds per game.

Spencer Hawes has found his shooting stroke, burying 16 of 22 shots in his last two games for 36 points. Hawes, however, had only one rebound on Tuesday night and has gone just 2 of 4 from the foul line in the last four games.

Who's not
Evan Turner continues to struggle with his shot. Though he led the Sixers with seven rebounds on Tuesday night, he shot 4 for 11. Over the last eight games, Turner is shooting just 36 percent (31 for 86).

Probable starters
Sixers
Jrue Holiday (18.4 ppg, 8.9 apg )
Jason Richardson (10.6 ppg, 3.9 rpg)
Lavoy Allen (6.5 ppg, 5.3 rpg)
Thad Young (14.7 ppg, 7.1 rpg)
Evan Turner (14 ppg, 6.7 rpg)

Raptors
Amir Johnson (8.1 ppg, 5.8 rpg)
Ed Davis (8.1 ppg, 6.1 rpg)
DeMar DeRozan (18.1 ppg, 4.7 rpg)
Jose Calderon (10.1 ppg, 7.7 apg)
Mickael Pietrus (22 mins., 5.9 ppg)

Injuries
Andrew Bynum (bone bruise) is out indefinitely.

Kwame Brown (personal issues) missed Tuesday nights game.

For the Raptors, Andrea Bargnani (elbow) is out.

Rookie Jonas Valanciunas (broken finger) is out.

Aaron Gray (flu), Linus Kleiza (knee) and Terrence Ross (ankle) are questionable for Wednesdays game.

E-mail John Finger at jfinger@comcastsportsnet.com

Sixers rearrange schedule because of Eagles fever

Sixers rearrange schedule because of Eagles fever

The Sixers coordinated their flight to Memphis with an important schedule in mind: get there in time Sunday to watch the Eagles' NFC Championship Game.

Once there, they have arranged a room with food to catch the 6:40 p.m. showdown as a team the night before they face the Grizzlies.

“We’re going to enjoy this with the city of Philadelphia,” Brett Brown said. “Stuff like this doesn’t come around very often. So on behalf of our team, we say, like the rest of the city: Go Eagles.”

The Sixers and Eagles have been showing their support for each other all season by attending games. Joel Embiid, in particular, has been a familiar face at Lincoln Financial Field, including this memorable reaction to Jake Elliott’s field goal in September.

Embiid noted the momentum of both the Eagles and Sixers this season and what it means for Philadelphia.

“Every time I go to an Eagles game, they always win,” Embiid said. “I’m going to be pulling for them. I want to say good luck. It would be good for the city … Hopefully, they win and on to the Super Bowl.”

Justin Anderson’s support of the Eagles goes beyond playing in the same city. His friendships with Torrey Smith, Rodney McLeod and Chris Long began before the NBA (see story).

“I talked to them and they were really excited,” Anderson said. “They think they’ve got a really good chance. It’d be huge for the city. Going to the Super Bowl, it’d be good. I’m excited, I’m excited. I hope they pull this one out.”

The Sixers will watch the Eagles fight through the postseason as they hope to be doing in April too. They ultimately have the same goal and have an appreciation for how far the Eagles have come already.

“I hope they win it all,” Ben Simmons said. “I’m an Eagles fan now.” 

Rockets beat Warriors in battle of West's best

usa-kevin-durant-chris-paul.jpg
USA Today Images

Rockets beat Warriors in battle of West's best

HOUSTON — Chris Paul scored 33 points and 11 rebounds, James Harden had 22 points and the Houston Rockets held off the Golden State Warriors 116-108 on Saturday night to snap their 14-game road winning streak.

Harden stepped back from Stephen Curry for a 3-pointer as the shot clock expired to make it 114-108 with 1:10 left. Harden then blocked Curry's 3-point attempt after a timeout, and Paul made two free throws with 28 seconds left.

Golden State lost away from home for the first time since Nov. 22. The Warriors had won seven straight in Houston.

Kevin Durant led Golden State with 26 points, Draymond Green had 21 and Curry added 19 on a night he went 5 of 15 on 3-point attempts.

The Warriors were wrapping up a five-game road trip and had won the first four games to tie a franchise record for consecutive road wins. But they struggled from the outset Saturday and trailed by double digits for most of the first half (see full recap).

Olynyk's free throw gives Heat win over Hornets
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Kelly Olynyk scored 14 of his 16 points in the fourth quarter, including a free throw with 0.2 seconds left, to help the Miami Heat erase a five-point deficit in the final 34 seconds and stun the Charlotte Hornets 106-105 on Saturday night.

Wayne Ellington had 26 points on six 3-pointers, Joe Johnson had 22 points and Olynyk was brilliant down the stretch.

Nic Batum scored a season-high 26 points and Kemba Walker had 22 for Charlotte, which had a two-game winning streak snapped.

Charlotte led 105-100 when Johnson got free for a dunk. The Hornets inbounded the ball to Batum, but Josh Richardson ripped it from his hands and passed to Johnson, who knocked down a 3-pointer from the wing to tie (see full recap).

Thunder score 148 points, keep Lebron short of 30,000 for career
CLEVELAND — LeBron James came up just short of 30,000 points.

Oklahoma City nearly got there, too.

Unable to stop Paul George, Russell Westbrook or Carmelo Anthony, the Cavaliers were embarrassed 148-124 on Saturday by the Thunder, who not only rolled to their fourth straight win but kept James shy of a historic milestone.

George scored 36 points, Westbrook had 23 and 20 assists and Anthony dropped a season-high 29 points as the Thunder tied the record for the most points given up by a Cleveland team in a regulation game. Philadelphia scored 148 on the Cavs back in 1972.

"I've never in my basketball life gave up 148 points, not even probably playing video games," James said. "They got everything that they wanted. Inside, outside, they had it moving." (see full recap).

Pelicans' stars all contribute in win over Grizzlies
NEW ORLEANS — Jrue Holiday scored 13 of his 27 points in the fourth quarter, DeMarcus Cousins had 24 points and 10 rebounds, and the New Orleans Pelicans beat the Memphis Grizzlies 111-104 on Saturday night.

Anthony Davis had 21 points and 12 rebounds but did not score his first points of the second half until he dunked with 1:15 to go in the game, giving the Pelicans a 108-102 lead.

Darius Miller added 12 points in a reserve role for New Orleans, which never trailed but very nearly blew a 21-point lead.

Trailing by 15 at halftime, Memphis scored the first 13 points of the third quarter, part of a 16-2 run to open the half that trimmed New Orleans' lead to a single point with most of the third quarter remaining (see full recap).