Instant Replay: Sixers Lose to Spurs as Comeback Attempt Falls Short

[CSNPhily] Instant Replay: Sixers lose to Spurs as comeback attempt falls short
John Coon | CSNPhilly.com Contributor

SALT LAKE CITY — Plenty of new faces got a chance to show what they can do for the Sixers on Tuesday. The team inserted a completely different starting five against the Spurs than the what it used against the Celtics on Monday in its first game.

Things started off promising. The Sixers came out strong on offense and led for large chunks of the first half. They ultimately could not withstand San Antonio's lethal trio of Kyle Anderson, Bryn Forbes and Johnathon Simmons in a 95-91 loss.

None of the three found a shot they couldn't make. Simmons led the way with 35 points on 13 of 18 shooting for the Spurs. Anderson chipped in 23 points on 10 of 17 shooting while Forbes added 23 points on 8 of 10 shooting.

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It helped the Spurs lead by as many as 23 points in the second half. The Sixers rallied in the fourth quarter behind a huge 20-4 run, but could not completely close the gap after Kwame Vaughn's layup made it a two-point game with 35.1 seconds left.

Turning point
Once the Sixers lost the lead late in the second quarter, they never could quite get it back. After Christian Wood buried a fadeaway three-pointer to tie it at 44-44 with 1:19 left before halftime, the Spurs scored 16 unanswered points to take control for good. Anderson capped the surge with back-to-back baskets, giving San Antonio a 60-44 lead with 7:22 left in the third quarter.

Simmons watch
Ben Simmons watched the second day of summer league play from the bench. Simmons sat out after suffering leg cramps in the fourth quarter during his Sixers debut on Monday. The team said it plans to put some limitations on minutes for Simmons during summer league play in Utah and Las Vegas to reduce the risk of injury to the No. 1 pick.

Team leaders
Once again, Wood finished as the leading scorer for a second straight game. Wood totaled 19 points on 5 of 8 shooting and added seven rebounds. He is averaging 19.5 points per game in the Utah Jazz Summer League so far.

Levi Randolph chipped in 14 points on 6 of 10 shooting and Maodo Lo added 13 points on 5 of 8 shooting off the bench.

Key stat
The Sixers rallied late behind a strong effort on the offensive glass. They had a 17-7 edge in offensive rebounds over the Spurs. The Sixers used those extra chances to their advantage, dominating 20-2 in second chance points.

Top Sixers plays
Left for dead at the end of the third quarter, the Sixers came to life on offense in the final nine minutes and rallied within a basket in the final seconds.

Randolph threw down a dunk and Lo buried a three-pointer to cap a 20-4 run and make it 89-85 with 3:15 remaining. Then, Randolph stole the ball and, after his layup was blocked by Simmons, Vaughn followed up with another layup to make it 93-91 with 35.1 seconds left.

Hometown heroes
Ryan Arcidiacono (Villanova), Will Cummings (Temple) and Quenton DeCosey (Temple) are on the Spurs' summer league roster. All three players had quiet outings against the Sixers.

Arcidiacono started and had zero points, five assists and two steals in 25 minutes. Cummings chipped in four points and four rebounds in 15 minutes off the bench. DeCosey had four points, three steals and two rebounds in a reserve role.

What's next?
The Sixers will close out the final day of the Utah Jazz Summer League against the Jazz on Thursday. Game tips at 9 p.m.

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