GRADES: Philadelphia 76ers 117, Detroit Pistons 111

Tobias Harris, Al Horford | Philadelphia 76ers (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images)
Tobias Harris, Al Horford | Philadelphia 76ers (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images) /

For the first time since Brett Brown’s inaugural season, the Philadelphia 76ers are 2-0.

A game that didn’t include each team’s best player. Blake Griffin struggling with hamstring issues, and Joel Embiid missing the game due to a right ankle sprain. With two main stars out, that means other players have to step up big and that’s exactly what happened.

The Pistons led 57-54 at halftime, after an abysmal first half from the Philadelphia 76ers. Sloppy offense and the lack of effort on the defensive end did that (also Furkan Korkmaz was just awful). The offense just didn’t seem to click at all, with very poor turnovers and no movement at all in the first half.

The beginning of the second half wasn’t any better, with the Detroit Pistons going on a 13-3 run to start the half. Finally, after a timely Brett Brown timeout to stop the run, the Sixers started playing like they wanted to win.

The offense flowed a lot more nicely, and things finally seemed to work for the Sixers. All starting with Harris and Simmons connecting on two alley-oop plays alongside two critical threes that cut the deficit short. The Harris and Simmons chemistry seems to be growing quite nicely.

There is also another connection brewing between Sixers players. Horford and Ben Simmons are  the perfect duo. Simmons driving to the rim forces teams to close on him, always leaving Al Horford with open looks. This play will be instrumental for the Sixers moving forward, and has already been in strong display in the first two games. It actually played a huge role in the fourth quarter, giving Big Al all the space to work with and score in the fourth.

MIKE SCOTT. A+. <strong>22 mins | 17 pts | 3 reb | 1 ast | 0 stl | 0 blk | 0 TO | 5-7 FG | 5-6 3PT| 2-2 FT | 2 PF | +11 |</strong><p>The Sixers couldn’t have had asked more from <a rel=. PF. Philadelphia 76ers

A. <strong>35 mins | 29 pts | 7 reb | 1 ast | 2 stl | 0 blk | 3 TO | 10-15 FG | 4-6 3PT| 5-6 FT | 5 PF | -2 |</strong><br /><a rel=. PF. Philadelphia 76ers. TOBIAS HARRIS

<strong>34 mins | 23 pts | 9 reb | 5 ast | 1 stl | 0 blk | 0 TO | 9-18 FG | 2-7 3PT| 3-5 FT | 4 PF | +9 |</strong><p>After being 0-5 after the first three quarters with lots of open looks (credits to Ben Simmons) .Al Horford exploded in the fourth quarter, scoring 11 consecutive points, and including two threes. He also had some nice passes and looked decisive in his decision making, which is something we’re not used to having at the backup center position.</p>. C. Philadelphia 76ers. AL HORFORD. B+

Philadelphia 76ers. BEN SIMMONS. B. <strong>35 mins | 13 pts | 4 reb | 10 ast | 7 stl | 0 blk | 5 TO | 5-13 FG | 0-0 3PT| 3-7 FT | 4 PF | +7 |</strong><p>Simmons had a career high in steals today with seven. Anticipating passes, disrupting ball handlers and just being a nuisance on that end. However, offensively…he did not look too good, and was very predictable. Aside from his passing, which is hard to stop… the Pistons did a good job of making sure Simmons wouldn’t get easy buckets by clogging the lane. His fierce defense cancelled out his poor offense today,  resulting in one of his more mediocre games.</p>. PG

C-. <strong>24 mins | 0 pts | 2 reb | 2 ast | 2 stl | 0 blk | 4 TO | 0-3 FG | 0-2 3PT| 0-0 FT | 0 PF | +3 |</strong><p>It was a rough start for Matisse debuting as a Starter for the first time in his career. Matisse looked good defensively as always, but offensively there is a lot he needs to work on. Improving his dribble, decision making and passing are all areas that he struggled with this game. He is still young, and it’s only his second ever NBA game. Matisse will still be a key rotation guy, because of what he provides on Defense.</p>. SG. Philadelphia 76ers. MATISSE THYBULLE

Josh Richardson didn’t have a memorable game, not hitting a single three-point shot and only scoring 10 points total. Defensively, as usual he is doing a great job.

Shake Milton did a great job off the bench, playing very aggressive scoring 10 points on 4-for-7 shooting. Shake made the most of his playing time after replacing Furkan in the second half. It’ll be surprising to see Furkan crack a rotation spot again, after Shake’s performance and Furkan continuously failing to hit threes.

Raul Neto also looked very good for the short time he was on the court with four points and two assists in only six minutes.

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Overall the Sixers don’t look as great as we thought they’d be, they still have a lot to figure out offensively. It’s only the second game, but hopefully in the third game we finally start seeing the offense flow a little better.