Sixers want James Harden being more of an aggressive point guard
MILWAUKEE–The Philadelphia 76ers were able to pick up a very impressive 133-130 win over the Milwaukee Bucks on Saturday night on the road. The Sixers trailed the Bucks by as many as 18 after Milwaukee hit them with a huge third quarter, but rather than wilting, the Sixers stormed back.
A key reason for the comeback win was James Harden. The Beared kicked it into high gear after halftime as he scored 23 points after halftime with 19 coming in the fourth quarter. He shot 6-for-10 in the second half compared to just 5-for-16 in the first half when it looked like he was struggling a bit with Milwaukee’s length.
Coach Doc Rivers would rather have Harden looking to be an aggressive point guard instead of looking to score the ball.
“I thought he was aggressive,” said Rivers. “In the first half, I thought he was aggressive more trying to score. In the second half, he scored, but he was aggressive playing like an aggressive point guard. I thought the second half was better because he not only scored, but he assisted as well. I thought the pick-and-roll switch back switch with Georges (Niang) was absolutely wonderful.”
What Rivers means by that is he wants Harden to look for his teammates first and be aggressive by getting into the paint. Once the defense collapses on The Beard, then he has to be able to kick out to shooters or be able to take advantage of any open creases to score. That is what happened on Saturday.
As the Sixers now move forward with their schedule, Harden is now just looking to build. They get a bit of a “soft” night on Monday when they face the Indiana Pacers, but they then have to face the Minnesota Timberwolves on Tuesday on the second night of a back-to-back.
“Hopefully, we can use this and just keep going,” Harden said after the win. “We keep talking about we got the tougher schedule remaining left for the season so for us, it’s just about every game. Every game, every quarter, every possession, just making sure we’re doing it all together and tonight (Saturday) was huge for us.”
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