All five starters scored in double figures for the Toronto Raptors, who took a 3-2 series lead after the Raptors destroyed the Philadelphia Sixers in a 36-point blow out in Game 5.
The Sixers were crushed by Toronto 125-89 in one of the most-embarrassing losses of the season. Jimmy Butler scored 22 points in the defeat, while Joel Embiid scored only 13 points despite a long list of maladies. Meanwhile, Ben Simmons continued to struggle in the playoffs scoring only 7 points in 25 minutes of action.
Pascal Siakam, who almost missed Game 4 for the Raptors, led all scorers with 25 points. Kawhi Leonard, who dropped 39 points in Game 4, added 21 points and 13 rebounds. All five starters for Toronto scored at least 11 points and hauled down 5 rebounds. The starters also contributed 10 total steals in the victory.
The Raptors shot 48.8 percent from the floor, including 40 percent from three-point range. The Raptors set a franchise record with 16 treys.
“The 3-point shot was punishing tonight,” said Philly Sixers coach Brett Brown.
The 36-point win also marked the largest margin of victory for Toronto in the NBA playoffs.
Philly Egg Layers
Philly’s scoring issues continued with another sub-100 points game. Ben Simmons’ slump continued. He scored 33 points in the last four games. Simmons contributed five turnovers and zero three-pointers. Embiid led the Sixers with eight turnovers.
“I think we laid an egg,” said Jimmy Butler, who is averaging 25.5 points in his last four games.
Embiid spent the off days in bed fighting off an upper respiratory infection. In the playoffs Embiid fought several injuries including a stomach virus.
“I have to do a better job for us to win,” said Joel Embiid.
Maybe you can blame Kendall Jenner for the latest Sixers blow out. Jenner, who has been romantically linked to Ben Simmons, skipped the NBA playoffs to make an appearance at the annual Met Gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. Jenner skipped games in the opening round in favor of Coachella. The Sixers dropped the first game against the Brooklyn, but then won four straight to advance to the Eastern Semifinals.
On Deck: Game 6
It’s do or die for the Sixers. They are down 3-2 and facing elimination after the blow out. They at least get to play on their home court for Game 6.
Meanwhile, the Raptors have the luxury of having two chances to win one game. That’s all the need to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals. One more game. The Raptors came into the postseason with the second-most wins in the East. They expected to meet Greek Freak and the Milwaukee Bucks in the Eastern Finals.
Despite the home game, the Sixers are 2-point home dogs according to multiple sports books in Las Vegas and offshore.
According to the South Point Casino and Sports Book in Las Vegas, the Philadelphia Sixers plummeted to 85/1 odds to win the NBA championship. The Toronto Raptors are 7/1 odds to win the NBA title.