Sixers: 3 takeaways from gutsy Game 3 win over Heat

Joel Embiid, Sixers (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Joel Embiid, Sixers (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /
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Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports /

Sixers-Heat Game 3 takeaways: The madness of Tyrese Maxey

Tyrese Maxey had zero points at halftime. For the second straight game, he followed up an underwhelming first two frames with a great final two frames. Such is the chaos and madness of Tyrese Maxey, a moxie-fueled 21-year-old whose performance seems to toggle between “inexperienced second-year guard” and “Michael Jordan.”

There’s still a lot of room for Maxey to grow as a player — he was actively dragging down the team at points in the first half — but when he gets going, there aren’t many more exciting players to watch in the NBA. Maxey has a blend of shot versatility and foot speed that is entirely unique to him. And, with Embiid and Harden both on the floor, Maxey can generally find seams in the defense and attack with prolific results.

Philadelphia can’t afford too many zero-point halves from Maxey. The next step in his development is making smarter decisions and producing more evenly throughout the game — knowing when to play aggressively, and when to run the offense. He’s either too passive or taking over games, and Maxey needs to find that middle ground at some point.

That said, it’s hard to complain about 21 points in the second half, one of the most absurdly athletic plays of the NBA season (his chasedown save-from-out-of-bounds play in transition), and some classic moments that will live on in Sixers history if Philadelphia can come from behind in this series (still a very big if).