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Pargo, Varejao Lead Cavaliers Past Sixers

The Philadelphia 76ers (7-5) played horrendously against the Cleveland Cavaliers, losing 92-83. The Sixers just seemed like they did not want to get the win tonight. Without Kyrie Irving, the Cavs (3-8) still managed to score 92 points and shoot an astounding 56% from the field. Lets have a look at the key elements that played an important factor:

Rebounding

Varejao dominated the paint (via Cleveland.com).

The Sixers were out-rebounded 55 to 39 and allowed Cavaliers’ center Anderson Varejao to rack up 19 boards. Surprisingly, the Sixers received big contributions in the rebounding category from Thaddeus Young and Evan Turner with 11 and 10 respectively. Usually this would be great for the Sixers, but this time their productivity in rebounding led to a lack of productivity from starting center Kwame Brown and backup Spencer Hawes. The entire team needs to improve when it comes to grabbing boards.

Varejao managed to grab 12 of the Cavaliers’ 15 offensive rebounds. The Sixers just could not find a way to box him out, and he just simply wanted it more than the Sixers’ big men.

Offense

The Sixers have had a terrible offense thus far, and it continued tonight. They shot 36% from the field and 24% from behind the 3-point line. Their offense is supposed to be led by Jrue Holiday, but with 4 turnovers against the Cavs and 4.7 per game on the season. Holiday did manage to score 16 points and rack up 5 dimes, but he needs to hold on to the ball, because the Sixers are not gonna beat teams by getting into shoot-outs.

Defense

The Sixers played mediocre defense, but their lack of rebounding gave the Cavs multiple second-chance opportunities. Without Kyrie Irving, the Cavs relied on the previously unknown Jeremy Pargo to fill-in. Pargo came into tonight’s game with a career high of 15 points. Against the Sixers, he scored a game-high 28. The Sixers allowed 92 points but forced 16 turnovers with 12 steals and 11 blocks.

The Sixers need to improve in all three of these categories, starting with rebounding. They cannot keep allowing teams to get second chance points and expect to win. Offensively, they need to find some type of rhythm and better defense will help them get easier buckets in transition.

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Categories: 76ers, Beat Writing, Editorial

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