Sixers vs Suns Grades
Contributors: Steve Jones (@swjones87) and Dan Morgan (@dansaysthat)
With the NBA season back in action, Process Potables will be bringing you a graded recap of the Sixers' players for every game until it's all said and done. Feel free to send us your thoughts to any of the above contributors, or the network in general (@processpotables)!
8 points, 2 rebounds, 7 assists, 0 block, 0 steals, -7
SJ: C. I wasn’t expecting a huge game for Shake based on what we've been seeing, but he still left a lot to be desired. He was fine executing the offense with seven assists opposed to zero turnovers, but I was really pulling for a big scoring game. We know he has the ability to get hot and put up points, but we haven't seen it since entering the bubble.
DM: C. I suppose grading Shake based on his play pre-quarantine is starting to become unfair. I've clamoured for him to increase his scoring going back to a pure lead ball handler role with Simmons out, and now without Embiid as well. He continues to disappoint there, as well as not show the defensive capabilities his size and length should grant him, but he is facilitating pretty well for a still young and raw talent. If nothing else, this is all valuable experience for one of the only value contracts the Sixers have going forward. I still worry he's going to have a very rough first round of the playoffs.
23 points, 2 rebounds, 4 assists, 0 blocks, 1 steal, -2
SJ: B+. If there were one player with the best odds to get 30 or more points, it definitely would’ve been Burks. Had he been able to provide a little more scoring, the final score would’ve been closer and maybe a win. This is his third game with 20 or more points, and it was encouraging to see him provide the same production as a starter. I would’ve like to seen him get to the line a little more in this game, but the entire team only went 10 of 14 from the foul line, which was one of many disadvantages an Embiid-less Sixers team will endure.
DM: A. Three games in a row with 20 or more, this is the peak of Burks time here in Philly, which unfortunately is going to cause anyone who may have even considered his next contract value slipping a bit to reconsider. The Sixers will need Burks to keep the scoring and more importantly, the efficiency up, going forward, but it's hard to imagine a situation where he remains a Sixer after this year with his current play.
7 points, 2 rebounds, 0 assists, 1 block, 0 steals, -9
SJ: C. Matisse was plagued with foul trouble tonight, and sat out most of the third quarter when he committed his fifth foul against Devin Booker two minutes in. I do give Matisse some benefit of the doubt here: the fifth foul against Booker was egregious, and just one of endless examples that NBA rookies have to earn their right for favorable foul calls. No Gordie Howe triple-double (2 blocks, 2 steals, 2 deflections) tonight, but at least he made a wide open three and had two very nice backdoor dunks thanks to Kyle O’Quinn’s elite high-post passing (not a typo or joke).
DM: B-. I've tended to focus on Matisse's offense in the bubble as we already know about his defense, but Brett unleashing him on elite talent has been fun to watch and great for 'Tisse's development. I think he had a lot to do with Booker's first half struggles (which was still 14 points, but he was not seeking out his shot and was forced to facilitate much more than iso-score), but Booker clearly had enough of him in the third quarter and hunted him, baiting him into his fifth foul very early on and putting Mattise on the bench. The kid had not backed down from the challenge, and for that he deserves a ton of credit, damn the results!
17 points, 4 rebounds, 1 assists, 0 blocks, 1 steal, +3
SJ: A+. The hive was alive tonight, as Mike Scott played un-bee-lieveably well (sorry, couldn’t help myself) [Editors note: I'll allow it]. He was the only Sixer with a positive rating for the entire game, his jump shot was wet, and played like he ain't no bee-itch. I praised Scott for his aggressiveness and defensive awareness last game, and tonight he was even more aggressive – and that will pay more dividends down the line than having a good box score game. Now I will say, Mike Scott did take two too many one legged fadeaway midrange jumpers for my liking, and did lose a few rebounds because he couldn’t catch or hold onto the ball – but the buzz surrounding his great play drowned out his few mistakes (ok, no more bee puns or bad puns, I promise).
DM: A. I do bee-lieve Steve made too many great points and shitty puns for me to say very much. All jokes aside, Scott looked like a man possessed early on. I imagine Brett liked what he saw and decided not to wear Scott out, as he barely played in the second half even when it was still close, due to him still coming back off the knee injury. Scott looks like he has carved himself out a bench role come the playoffs, at least while he remains hot.
9 points, 10 rebounds, 11 assists, 1 block, 2 steals, -12
SJ: A. Can’t believe that the team’s 15th man was flirting with a triple double. And to add insult to injury, he was only one point shy (see below) of a meaningless triple-double. O’Quinn has played so little this year, that we all forgot how well he can pass the ball. While not know for his defensive efficiency, he was decent defending the paint and had an impressive block on Devin Booker in the fourth quarter. But don’t hold your breath – as long as a healthy Embiid and Horford return, he shall retreat back to Bret's doghouse.
DM: A. Bullying works. Slandering works. You're welcome KOQ. Glad you've been reading. Always liked you. Damn shame he didn't get the triple double. Crazy how good you can be when you aren't jacking bad three's huh?
12 points, 0 rebounds, 0 assists, 0 blocks, 1 steal, -16
SJ: C. Furkan had a decent game, shooting well from the field and was aggressive with driving to the basket, yet continues to be a liability on defense. Yes, it would be unfair to expect any of the non-starters tonight to be able to slow down Devin Booker or any other of the Suns guards, however the playoffs start next week and no one on the bench will be able to afford too many lapses on defense. (Also, I won’t slander Furkan at all as our editor won’t allow it) [Editor's note: correct].
DM: C+. I've tried to stay as unbiased as the world's biggest Korkmaz stan can, and i'll continue to do so here. The three's were falling, which is all that really matters with Furk, but he really hasn't shown the flashes in other departments we were getting most of the regular season. With how little I need from him to absolutely worship him, this entire bubble experience has been incredibly underwhelming (just like the rest of the team really).
4 points, 5 rebounds, 1 assists, 2 blocks, 0 steals, -4
SJ: D. Pelle, who is normally the first big man off the bench if either Embiid or Horford are out for a game, got outperformed by Kyle O’Quinn. He managed to pick-up 5 fouls in just 16 minutes of play. While his skill set is predominately rim running and rim protection, his decision making and susceptibility to racking-up quick fouls may be problematic down the line if he is needed for playoff minutes.
DM: D. Tough day for the "Pelle's Belles" and I. I still like the idea of Pelle in like, 4-6 minutes if needed in a playoff series over KOQ just because of his defense, athleticism, and rim protection, but KOQ clearly showed his veteran presence and facilitation skills tonight. Both are an upgrade over Amir Johnson and Greg Monroe, right?
Glenn Robinson III
15 points, 7 rebounds, 0 assists, 0 blocks, 0 steals, -7
SJ: B. Glenn Robinson went 3 of 6 from three, including a nice And-1 on a three pointer in the third quarter. While his offensive output has been fine off the bench, he did not standout to me defensively in this game. Known for his ability for perimeter defending, neither he nor anyone else on the Sixers were able to stop Devin Booker or Mikal Bridges (ouch) [Editor's note: OUCH]. As stated previously, his ability to both defend and shoot from the perimeter could very well limit Matisse’s minutes in the playoffs.
DM: B+. I thought GRIII looked good off the bench, for still getting into the swing of things, and had a lot of energy on the offensive end. As I stated in my minutes projection article, I think GRIII is an important piece in what looks like a certain matchup with the Celtics in round one, and he and 'Tisse could both be good energy guys on both ends of the court, with GRIII the better scorer and 'Tisse the pesky defender.
22 points, 2 rebounds, 4 assists, 0 blocks, 0 steals, -11
SJ: B+. In a game where individual performances outweighed the game result, Raul Neto tied his career high with 22 points and scored 19 of his points in the second half. Ironically, Neto started to get hot towards the end of the third quarter when he blew by the Homie, Dario Saric, for an easy layup. All of his shots that he created himself were very crafty and creative. Unfortunately, I see this as a one off and obviously can’t rely on Neto down the stretch, especially with how poorly he defends.
DM: B. Bullying works. Slandering works. You're welcome Howooooool. Glad you've been reading. Always liked you. Damn shame you're a swinging door on defense. I'm honestly done. I don't wanna write anymore.
[Editor's note: Brett gets an F for not playing Marial Shayok]