The Philadelphia 76ers couldn’t seal the deal last weekend when they had a chance to close out their first-round series against the Toronto Raptors with a clean sweep.
After going up 3-0 over the Raptors with two blowout wins and a tight overtime victory on the road, the Sixers came up short with an eight-point loss in Toronto.
Despite losing last Saturday, the Sixers returned to their home court on Monday with a prime opportunity to eliminate the Raptors once again.
However, Toronto proved they wouldn’t go out easy. With a disappointing showing on their home court during Game 5, the Sixers couldn’t get it done once again.
With another loss, the Raptors got the series to 3-2 and forced a Game 6 in Toronto on Thursday night.
The Sixers got off to a solid start in Game 6. As they knocked down over 60-percent of their shots in the first quarter, Philadelphia outscored Toronto 34-29.
Scroll to Continue
In the second quarter, the Raptors and the 76ers were neck and neck. As the Raptors outscored the Sixers 32-28, they got Philly’s lead down to just one point before halftime.
The first half was tight, but the Sixers took control of the game in the third quarter. With an impressive run led by Sixers guard Tyrese Maxey, Philly outscored the Raptors 37-17 and left the Toronto crowd uneasy.
The Raptors didn’t give their fans much to cheer for in the second half, and those in attendance grew frustrated when Sixers center Joel Embiid committed an offensive foul on Raptors big man Chris Boucher.
Every time Embiid touches the ball while in Toronto, the crowd boos loudly. But after he had a quick exchange with Boucher, the crowd started an explicit chant.
Embiid didn’t get frustrated, though. Instead, the big man embraced the noise as he cupped his ears in a way to encourage the fans to keep going.
Considering the Sixers have a significant lead over the Raptors, Embiid couldn’t help but embrace the chants as he’s confident his team can close out the series with a Game 6 win on Thursday night.
Justin Grasso covers the Philadelphia 76ers for Sports Illustrated. You can follow him for live updates on Twitter: @JGrasso_.