Sixers Fall to Celtics 81-65 in Preseason Finale
The Philadelphia 76ers ended their preseason schedule Friday night with an 81-65 loss to the Boston Celtics at the Verizon Wireless Arena in Manchester, New Hampshire. The loss dropped the Sixers to 2-5 on the preseason.
The Sixers struggled mightily on the offensive end, shooting just 28.9% from the field, 13% from three point range, and finished the game with nearly as many turnovers (23) as made field goals (24).
Jahlil Okafor led the Sixers in scoring with 12, but he shot just 6-16 from the field and finished with 5 turnovers on the night. Jerami Grant was the only other Sixers player in double figures with 11 points off the bench.
The Celtics didn’t shoot much better, as they hit on only 35% of their field goal attempts and shot only 21.4% from three point range. Where the Celtics did do a lot of damage was on the offensive glass, hauling in a total of 18 offensive rebounds on the night. Amir Johnson led the way with 5 offensive rebounds in an 18 minute run.
Nerlens Noel was one of the few bright spots for the Sixers, especially on the defensive end. Noel finished with 8 points, 9 rebounds, 4 steals, and 3 blocks on the night. Noel averaged an impressive 12.2 points, 8.6 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 3.2 steals, and 1.4 blocks per game in 28 minutes per night during the preseason.
Okafor, on the other hand, struggled throughout the preseason. He did average 10.4 points per game, but he did so on just 38.6% shooting from the field. Okafor also committed 3.6 turnovers per game and hauled in just 4.4 rebounds in just over 20 minutes per night.
The Sixers begin regular season play next Wednesday night on the road against Boston. The home opener will be Friday night against the Utah Jazz.
Robert Covington Injured
Third year forward Robert Covington suffered a sprained right knee in the fourth quarter of the game and did not return. After the game Covington was seen walking around on crutches, according to Bob Cooney of the Philadelphia Daily News.
No word yet on the extent of the injury and how much, if any, time he will miss. Covington is scheduled to have an MRI on the knee tomorrow, per Keith Pompey.
After signing with the Sixers in mid-November, Covington averaged 13.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 1.5 assists per game. He connected on 37.4% of his 446 three point attempts on the season.