2. Cavaliers at 76ers – Feb. 23 – ESPN
Cleveland traveled to Philadelphia on Feb. 15 and lost by six points on prime-time TV despite one of Garland’s best performances of the season. He sliced the lane against drop coverage for multiple floaters and jumpers over Joel Embiid, recording 10 of 14 makes.
Mitchell added 33 points, and Mobley had 23, but it wasn’t enough, as it was one of the worst defensive efforts of the season. Embiid had 17 of his 29 points in the second half while five other teammates scored in double figures, and the 76ers converted 50 percent of their tries, 48.1 percent of their 3-point attempts and shot 93.1 percent (27/29) at the line.
Cleveland suffered because it flagrantly left the corners unmonitored to cut off the drive, defenders went under screens and the 2-3 zone wasn’t sharp. Philadelphia started the match making its first six deep shots.
Regarding Embiid, he scored on three attempts defended by Jarrett Allen and Mobley at the same time. They either weren’t strong or fast enough, and Embiid ended the night with 14 points in the interior of Philly’s 46.
Despite holding the 76ers to low paint production, Embiid feasted and his touches near the basket opened up the perimeter. Allen and Mobley must be more successful in containing him, or this will continue to be a bad matchup for the Cavs.