The Philadelphia 76ers won a basketball game that they probably shouldn't have last night, beating the Jazz in Utah, 104-97. Joel Embiid was a DNP -- Been Too Long Since the Last One, and Ben Simmons shot 7-22 with as many turnovers as assists. But they won, the way they've won all season. They passed the ball (23 assists, actually below their 26.2 average), and they shot the three (12-27 from deep). And now they're 6-4, tied for the East's third best record. Love is strange.
The shooting -- third-best from range in the league, if you can believe it, with the fifth-most makes on average -- is the starkest part of the Sixers' success this season. (Besides the whole, y'know, having two future superstars thing.) A franchise that has historically lacked for floor-stretching -- comically so at times, particularly in the later years of the Doug Collins era and the pre-adolescence of The Process -- is now one of the great bombs-away threats of the entire Association.
Here's five quick stats that should drive home the lunacy of all this.
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-The Sixers haven't had a rotation regular shoot over 40% from three since Hollis Thompson (40.1%) in 2014-15. Through 11 games this year, they have five: JJ Redick (43.4%), Jerryd Bayless (42.2%), Robert Covington (50%), T.J. McConnell (50%) and Dario Saric (40.9%).
-The Sixers already have six games where they've made 12 or more triples. In 2013-14, the first season of The Process, they had four such games all season.
-Only one 76er has ever hit 200 threes in a season: Kyle Korever (226) in 2004-05. Both J.J. Redick and Robert Covington are on pace to beat that mark this year.
-Only five players in the NBA have hit 35 threes so far this season. Of those, Robert Covington's 50% rate is easily the highest. (Klay Thompson is second at 45.9%.)
-The 76ers have shot over 35% from deep for a season just six times, with the best season coming in 1994-1995 -- otherwise known as the Dana Barros season -- at 37.9%. They're currently shooting 39.9%.
Wild. Just wait till JoJo starts hitting 'em.