By Dylan MacKinnon
Game one could not have gone better for the Sixers. They won 131-111, and Maxey looked the part of a true Super Star. But game one is in the books, and the Sixers’ focus moves on to the second game, to try to take a 2-0 lead. They will do so vs a likely short-handed Raptors team. The Raptors suffered multiple injuries in Saturday’s game.
Scottie Barnes (Ankle) is already listed as out. He suffered a left ankle sprain late in game 1 when Joel Embiid inadvertently stepped on his foot. Initial X-Rays were negative, but he will be out for at least tonight’s game. His status for any other games remains unclear, but it is likely this won’t be the only game he misses. Barnes is a finalist for Rookie of the Year. He averaged 15.3 points, 7.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists, and 1.1 steals per game this year. Barnes was just two assists shy of a triple-double Saturday night. He finished with 15pts, 10 rebounds, 8 assists, on 4-6 shooting before leaving the game.
The Raptors may also be without Thad Young (Thumb) and Gary Trent Jr. (Illness), who are both doubtful to play. Young left Saturday night’s game after spraining his thumb while wrestling for the ball with Embiid on the ground. He played in just 6 minutes and scored no points. During the season with the Raptors, he averaged 18.3 minutes per game, while scoring 6.3pts, and pulling down 4.4 rebounds.
Trent Jr. meanwhile has been battling illness for over a week. He tried to play through it, but struggled, scoring just 9pts while shooting 2-11 from the field. Trent Jr. is a big part of the Raptors’ offense. He starts at SG, playing 35 minutes per game. At 18.3 pts per game, he is their 3rd leading scorer. between the 3 players, they are missing combined, they are losing 39.9 pts per night. If all 3 can’t go, that would be two starters and 1 key bench player.
“I mean, listen, it doesn’t look good for any of those guys. They’re all going to be listed as probably doubtful, so it doesn’t look good for any of them. We’ll evaluate them as we go and see where we end up.”- Nick Nurse at Shootaround on Sunday.
The Sixers have a mostly clean injury report, at least for now. Embiid and Harden both have minor injuries that have nagged them throughout the year, but nothing that would keep them off the floor. The only two players on the injury report are Charles Bassey and Jaden Springer, who wouldn’t get playing time anyway.
The game tips at around 7:30. Our coverage begins at 6pm with a special pregame show, hosted by Devon Givens and Bob Cooney. Tom McGinnis is on the call. Tune in then to see if the Sixers can improve to a 2-0 lead. Stay tuned after the game to react to the result on In The Post with Devon Givens.