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Cam Payne battled through the flu to try and help Sixers battle Nets

NEW YORK — At this stage of the season, it’s all hands on deck for the Philadelphia 76ers. Missing Joel Embiid, Tyrese Maxey, and other key pieces, the Sixers paid a visit to the Brooklyn Nets on Tuesday looking for a win.

After leading by as many as 14, the offense went a bit stagnant and Philadelphia was unable to really find a groove the rest of the night. The Sixers ended up dropping one to the Nets 112-107 and dropped to the No. 7 seed in the East.

The Sixers did get a bit of a Herculean performance out of Cam Payne. The veteran started and played 22:35 in the loss and had 15 points on 5-for-10 shooting in the loss while playing through the flu.

“I’ve got the flu for real,” Payne said after the game. “It happened in the Charlotte game. I started feeling it when we got to Dallas. On the plane, it kind of kicked in. That’s why I missed the game. Today, I was at shootaround. I wasn’t feeling too good, but got back to the hotel, slept the whole time, and I was like I’m gonna give it a go. I told him I was 75-80 when he came in and said you sure? I was like yeah. He was like you’re starting then. Gotta stay ready. You gotta fight through it.”

One has to assume that Payne gave the effort he did due to Philadelphia missing Maxey, but that wasn’t it. He wanted to help the Sixers take on the Nets regardless of how he was feeling.

“Nah, it wasn’t one of those things,” Payne added. “Just for me honestly, like, I was like ‘Man, I’m 30 years old bro. Get out there and play. Sick or not, bro. Just get out there and help your team.’ That’s all it was.”

Coach Nick Nurse wasn’t sure how much Payne could really give the Sixers so he turned to newly signed two-way player Jeff Dowtin Jr. in the second quarter for some backup minutes.

“At that point of the game, we weren’t sure what Cam was going to have because he played those three minutes and said he needed a sub,” said Nurse. “That was time to get Jeff’s feet wet a little bit, just in case Cam wasn’t going to be able to play much tonight. We were able to get Cam in and out and in and out to get through it. We were trying to make sure, just in case we were down to one (backup) point guard, that Jeff had already had some minutes under his belt.”

The Sixers will take on the Memphis Grizzlies on Wednesday back at home.

Story originally appeared on Sixers Wire