PHILADELPHIA–The Philadelphia 76ers suffered a 117-107 loss to the Boston Celtics on Wednesday night in what can be chalked up to a tough matchup for them. It was the second night of a back-to-back for them following a tough matchup with the track meet Indiana Pacers on Tuesday.
It was a tough night for just about everybody. Joel Embiid had 20 points on 8-for-16 shooting with nine rebounds and seven assists, but he was a minus-25 in 33:55 of playing time. Tyrese Maxey had some struggles as did almost everybody in the lineup.
The bench unit wasn’t much better either. The Sixers were unable to get good production out of many players, but Jaden Springer made a big case for more minutes on the floor.
In 20:10 off the bench, Springer had nine points, two rebounds, and two steals and he was plus-20. The impact he had on the game was undeniable.
“He was great,” Embiid said of Springer. “He’s a guy that comes in, he works hard. He should definitely get a lot of minutes. He did tonight (Wednesday). He’s tough defensively, he knows how to play, cut to the basket. He had a great drive in the first half from the corner and he scored. It’s tough. I’m sure as they see, I’m sure they’re gonna get a better feel and they’re gonna start using him more.”
Coach Nick Nurse is still looking to find a consistent rotation. Especially, while being down Nic Batum and Kelly Oubre Jr. at the moment. He gave Marcus Morris Sr., Danuel House Jr., and Furkan Korkmaz a look, but Springer stood out and Nurse is going to have to give him a look at some point.
“He probably is,” Nurse said of Springer earning more playing time. “I think that he certainly did everything he could possibly do in his minutes, right? Again, I gotta learn a lot about what’s going on with this team. I think that maybe a night like tonight when it is a back-to-back, that we look at some fresh bodies just because.”
Essentially, Nurse is saying that due to the way the schedule is set up and Philadelphia missing important pieces, it gives Springer a chance at playing some more.
“I think that we do have some guys that we probably count on regularly,” Nurse added. “But heavy schedule and all that kind of stuff, it might be a good idea to try different rotations on back-to-backs.”
There is so much that Springer can offer the team. He can get to the basket off the dribble, he is a pest defensively, and his offense is continuing to take steps forward.
“He’s great and he was really good,” Maxey added of Springer. “I told him, it’s funny because I told him before the game, be ready, and he was ready. I’m proud of him. He stays ready, though. He works on his game. He’s a competitor. Whoever we asked him to guard, he goes out there and does it, and he’s very disruptive while doing it.”