The absence of Anthony Davis was felt from the start as the Philadelphia 76ers jumped out to a huge first quarter lead before coasting home with a 96-81 win on Friday night.
Michael Carter-Williams led the way for the Sixers with 22 points, seven assists, six rebounds and three steals. Nerlens Noel and Robert Covington also had nice outings in the win. Noel had 17 points on 7 of 10 shooting from the floor to go along with 11 rebounds, five blocks and two steals while Covington contributed 18 points, six rebounds, three assists and a pair of blocked shots. Luc Richard Mbah a Moute added 13 points and four boards.
The Pelicans’ starters struggled mightily in the road loss. They combined to score 44 points on 15 of 46 shooting from the floor and 11 for 19 from the free-throw line. Eric Gordon was the only starter to notch double figures with 16 points as well as six rebounds and three assists. Alexis Ajinca managed a huge night off the bench with 16 points on 6 of 9 shooting from the floor and 14 rebounds.
Jimmer Fredette saw 23:16 of action in the defeat and had his most productive game of the season. He registered 13 points on 5 for 8 shooting from the field and 3 for 3 from the free-throw line. He added a season-high five assists and two rebounds and was a +11 during his time on the floor.
Fredette did most of his scoring in the fourth quarter, but also had plenty of nice moments early in the game. His first bucket of the game came on a midrange jumper in the first quarter. He followed that up with three second quarter assists as the Pelicans made their only real push of the night and cut the 76ers’ lead to just one.
After making a pair of free-throws late in the third, Jimmer made four baskets in the fourth quarter. He started it off with a lay up on an assist from Tyreke Evans before knocking down a turnaround in the lane . His last two baskets of the night came in the final minutes. He hit another shot in the paint to reach double figures before adding a 3-point play on a baseline jumper while drawing the foul.
Up next for Fredette and the Pelicans is a trip to Toronto to face the Raptors on Sunday afternoon.
If you are looking for how Matt Carlino has been doing, here is the link to his latest performance.