By Dylan MacKinnon
In his time with the Sixers, James Harden has not been known for his scoring. But that was not the case tonight. He found his groove from 3 tonight. Harden went 6-10 from 3, on his way to a team-high 31pts. His play lifted the Sixers to a win in game 4. The Sixers wound up winning 116-108. Despite falling behind 0-2 in Miami, they will head back there with the series tied.
Four of those Harden 3s came in the final quarter. He scored 16 total in that frame. What woke Harden up and helped him find his Houston form? Who knows. But without his efforts, the Sixers very well may have been heading back to Miami down 3-1. It was the most 3pters he has hit in one night in 62 games. On top of the scoring, he also had 9asts and 7rebs. You can relive his barrage from deep here, as called by Tom McGinnis.
Tonight's Play of the Game in the @sixers win is actually 6 plays. Specifically, all 6 of James Harden's 3's. Here is every single 3pter Harden hit on his way to a 31pt night, as called by @McGinnisThomas . pic.twitter.com/TTlHmyi9vk— 975TheFanatic (@975TheFanatic) May 9, 2022
Besides Harden, Embiid finished with 24pts, Maxey with 18, Harris with 13, and Green with 11. Harris and Green both got into foul trouble and had to come off the floor at times. Embiid scored just 9pts after the first quarter. But as in game 3, it was his defense that stood out. He didn’t lock up bam Adebayo the same way he did the last game. But he still managed to keep him from being the force he was in games 1 and 2.
Jimmy Butler gave them a ton of trouble tonight, as he did in game 3. Butler scored 40 of their 108 points. This after he scored 33 of their 79 pts in game 3. But the problem for the Heat is no one else is stepping up. In Game 3 just one other Heat player scored double digits, with Tyler Herro netting 14pts. Tonight Adebayo had 21pts, and Herro 14. But 3 of the Heat 5 starters were held under 10.
The Sixers are now one step closer to being just the 32nd team to come back from being down 0-2 in a series in NBA history. The Bucks did it twice last year on their way to a Title. The Sixers are in a unique situation when it comes to that since they were missing their MVP Joel Embiid in the first two games. With him back, they are now 2-0, and have outscored the Heat by 28 with him in the lineup.
If they can win in Miami Tuesday night, they will come home again on Thursday with a chance to clinch the series at home. If a game 7 is required, it will come at some point next Sunday.