Doc Rivers still has confidence that Sixers can come back to beat Heat

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CAMDEN, N.J. — The Philadelphia 76ers are in a tough position as they return home from South Florida following a terrible 120-85 drubbing at the hands of the Miami Heat on Tuesday. The Sixers looked flat from the jump where they fell behind by 12 in the first quarter and trailed by as many as 37.

As they get set to stave off elimination in Game 6 on Thursday, there is still some hope for them. For all of their flaws, Philadelphia does possess the best player in this series in the form of Joel Embiid as well as an explosive guard like James Harden who can still go off at any moment.

The Sixers also have the advantage of being at home. They have not been very good on the road in this series, but they have been terrific at home as they were able to pick up wins in Games 3 and 4, and that gives them confidence.

“I have confidence in my team,” said coach Doc Rivers. “We wouldn’t be this far if you didn’t. We have proven we can win games. We have proven we can win games in this series and up to this point, no one’s won on the road. So yeah, we should have a lot of confidence going into the game.”

The Sixers will also be playing with a ton of desperation. Just like when they led the Toronto Raptors 3-0 in Round 1 and the Raptors responded by winning two in a row to make them sweat a little, the Sixers now must dig deep and respond to a very good Miami team.

“You should always be a desperate team,” Rivers added. “It’s the playoffs. Every game is desperate. I watched Games 3 and 4 of the Milwaukee games. That was desperate by both teams, and that’s how you have to perform and you have to expect Miami to play desperate too. You have to expect their best and that’s how we have to have the attitude tomorrow (Thursday).”

The Sixers were down 3-2 to the Atlanta Hawks in the 2021 playoffs and then went on the road to force a Game 7. Rivers also has a history of being down 3-2 as a coach with the Los Angeles Clippers where they went into San Antonio and beat the Spurs in Game 6 before winning in Game 7. He and the Sixers have that experience to bank on.

“I’ve done that before, but that doesn’t matter,” Rivers finished. “None of that matters. That was a different team and that was a different group that did it. We have to do it now. We’re at home. We expect to win the game, but we have to play. You just can’t show up at home and think the game is just gonna be won. We need to come out and perform.”

76ers-Heat: Margin of victory in Game 6? - Powered By PickUp

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