Cleveland Cavaliers’ kids arise, beat 76ers 112-109 in OT, matching season’s longest win streak

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PHILADELPHIA – It wasn’t nice, it took an extra five minutes and they almost made it late with a miserable third quarter and a few mistakes, but the Cleveland Cavaliers have hit their longest winning streak of the season – and they can thank them for more promising young core for it.

The Cavaliers won their third game in a row, defeating the east-leading Philadelphia 76ers for the second time that season, 112-109 in overtime. This time Philly had MVP candidate Joel Embiid, who finished with 42 points (just not Tobias Harris).

No Andre Drummond for not taking this trip as the organization continues to seek a trading partner. No Kevin Love, who is unlikely to play before the All-Star break because of the high calf strain. No Matthew Dellavedova not fit this season thanks to a severe concussion and recent appendicectomy. No Larry Nance Jr., the unsung hero of the team’s quick start, making steady progress after an operation on his left hand, but not yet on the verge of a comeback. Taurean Prince (personal reasons) and Cedi Osman (back cramps) were also unavailable. All six veterans were expected to provide support and experience.

The Cavs children learn to stand alone.

Head coach JB Bickerstaff spoke about the stress that the young people had to bear due to the injuries. He admitted the growing pain that came with it. His hope: the organization will be better for it. This experience will pay off at some point. Let’s call it a baptism of fire.

“Every time you get such a tough win it confirms what you can do,” said Bickerstaff. “I don’t want to jump with the gun because we are being tested further. Every single day is a new test for us and we have to answer these tests. I feel like we’re getting better, I feel like we’re getting better as a group. Are we already there? No, we are not done yet. But I think we are getting better and we have to keep answering the bell when we are tested. “

Sexton scored a team high of 28 points in the 11-of-27 shooting with five rebounds, three assists and three steals in 45 minutes. In less than two minutes, with the Cavs behind, Sexton dropped a 3-pointer before greeting 76’s assistant coach Sam Cassell and letting the opposing bank know how great his … um … courage is.

Darius Garland scored 11 of his 25 points in extra time. He also had nine templates. Garland said early Saturday morning that despite the opposing defenses determined to keep him from getting in the color, he would continue to play his own game. He did just that, sliding into the lane for artful results and patented floaters, two of which came in overtime to keep the Sixers at bay.

“I thought he was really good and I thought this was growth and steps in the right direction,” Bickerstaff said of Garland. “He has the green light to play the right game. They withdrew from him so he has to do this. He had the confidence to stick with it, and by the way he found it, those surfaces around the glass and those little swimmers. “

Isaac Okoro had his best night as a rookie before retiring. He achieved a career high of 15 points with eight rebounds, three steals and three assists. Okoro took Cleveland’s first three points in OT.

Jarrett Allen, the defensive anchor, fought Embiid throughout. Allen finished with 14 points and 10 rebounds. Even Dean Wade, the 24-year-old starter, contributed with six points and 12 rebounds. The Cavs are 3-0 since Wade was added to the starting group.

After leading the entire first half into the break with a nine point lead, the Cavs opened the third quarter with six errors in a row. Bickerstaff had to take a break and tried to regroup. They missed two more shots before Okoro’s offensive rebound allowed them to finally break the ice. Despite emerging from the locker room and scoring 16 points in the third, the Cavs held onto a two point lead in the fourth quarter.

You have played just enough in the past 17 minutes. They showed enough equilibrium against one of the best in the league, who was 14-2 at home, and at the end of regulation overcame four misses and then a costly turnover that allowed the 76ers to play a game with one possession 20 seconds ahead of OT close . Cleveland fought until last summer, crowning a busy February with a third straight win, led by four of the Cavs’ key building blocks for 82 of their 112 total points.

This is what growth looks like. More than any other, Saturday’s game was a glimpse into the future.

Homecoming

Philadelphia-born rookie swing man Lamar Stevens was back home for the first time in his NBA career. Stevens got a longer playing time and couldn’t score a goal in 19 minutes.

Snapping strips

Early in the second quarter, Dylan Windler missed a 3-point corner kick and ended a series of nine three-packs that covered two games. It was the longest straight run since Kyrie Irving in 2015. He finished the race with eight points, no Trey among them.

Next

The Cavs will end this mini road trip with two games on Monday night in Houston. Tipoff is set for 9 p.m.

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New Cavs Face Masks For Sale: Here, you can purchase Cleveland Cavaliers-themed face covers for coronavirus protection, including a single mask ($ 14.99) and a pack of 3 ($ 24.99). All NBA proceeds were donated to charity.

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