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Kyle Lowry had a message for Sixers to close out win over former Heat team

PHILADELPHIA — The Philadelphia 76ers needed a win on Monday night at home against the Miami Heat. The standings are in a big bunch as the season begins to really come to a close. The Heat had won the first two matchups between the teams and the Sixers needed a win against Miami in the worst way.

The Sixers were able to do so with a 98-91 win on Monday, but it didn’t come easy. Philadelphia held a 12-point lead in the first half that it squandered and then held a 17-point lead in the third quarter before the Heat rallied to tie it and threaten to steal one on the road.

However, former Heat guard Kyle Lowry made sure the Sixers understood that they had to keep playing and close it out.

“They’re gonna fight, right? And they weren’t ever gonna quit,” coach Nick Nurse said of the Heat. “Kyle kept reminding everybody on the bench that they weren’t gonna quit even when we had a 17-point lead or whatever it was. They had a great run and we responded pretty good there at the end.”

The Heat are one of those teams that you have to knock them out to really beat them. No lead is ever safe and Miami doesn’t quit until the final buzzer sounds. Lowry has seen first-hand from his 2.5 seasons in South Florida. It’s that “HEAT Culture” that Miami proudly presents.

“I love and admire those guys so much,” said Lowry who drilled a big triple late and made winning plays all night. I still root for them except when I’m playing against him, but there was no added juice. There was just like go out there and try to win the game for our team because of the standing. It’s going to be a tight race and we got to do what we can do and hold it down while we can and then try to take advantage of opportunities that we have and win as many games as we possibly can.”

On the night, Lowry had 16 points including five in the waning moments of the game. Philadelphia needed him to stabilize things down the stretch and it was an important win for this group.

“He was in his OG bag tonight, man,” laughed Kelly Oubre Jr. “It was really good to see him aggressive. You definitely knew that he had the energy. It was his former team. He wanted to win very badly and that just goes to show the impact that he can bring. Any given night, he can use his IQ and manipulate and control the game and that’s what he did tonight.”

Story originally appeared on Sixers Wire