This battle Joel Embiid can be said to play the worst playoff performance of his career, plus-minus -29, not only tied for the worst in the game, but also the worst in his playoff career. Although Embiid hit nearly 60% in the whole game, as the scoring leader in the regular season, he only scored 17 points, which was below the standard.
The Heat, who had two consecutive losses on the road, returned to their home court and played a bottom-out performance. The audience soared 120 points, beat the 76ers with a gap of 35 points, and took the lead in grabbing the draw win, only one step away from the Eastern Championship. a step far.
Worst playoff game of his career: why Embiid went awry
This battle Joel Embiid can be said to play the worst playoff performance of his career, plus-minus -29, not only tied for the worst in the game, but also the worst in his playoff career. Although Embiid hit nearly 60% in the whole game, as the regular scoring leader, he only scored 17 points, which was below the standard. The Heat’s team defense in this game was quite successful, effectively reducing the help that Embiid brought to the 76ers.
In the last game, Embiid attacked the basket from the beginning, which brought great pressure on the Heat’s relatively short interior. In this game, the Heat immediately adjusted and adopted regional defense from the beginning of the game, trying to fill the penalty area, which made it difficult for Embiid to slide down after the high pick-and-roll. Received the ball and chose to pop out to the perimeter C&S, resulting in Embiid’s 6 shots in the first half only once in the legal collision zone, scoring only 6 points.
The 76ers realized that Embiid was too much of a perimeter jumper in the first half, so in the second half he arranged for him to get the ball in more positions near the restricted area, but the Heat’s zone defense still made it difficult for his teammates to hoist the ball to Embiid. For example, in the video below, Embiid takes the ball all the way from the elbow to the basket. P.J. Tucker, who is in front of the defense, always stays in the front position, preventing Embiid from getting the ball easily.
Although Embiid made 5 of 6 shots in the second half and seemed to respond, in fact most of Embiid’s shots were one-on-one singles with the ball in the high post or the top of the arc like in the video below. There are not many teamwork. All in all, the Heat’s defensive strategy in this game is to put Embiid into a situation of fighting alone, cutting off the connection between Embiid and his teammates, and even if he scores, it must cost a lot of effort.
The Heat completely blocked Harden without switching defenses and shrinking the defense line.
James Harden, who played well in the last game, also had the team’s worst plus-minus at -29 in this game. The miserable performance was also attributed to the Heat’s solid team defense. The goal of the Heat G4 in defending Harden is to never switch defenses. The purpose is to not let him have any gaps to break through. For example, in the video below, Victor Oladipo, who is in charge of guarding Harden, performs a Double Drag in the face of the 76ers and chooses to wear (go over) ), blocking Harden’s path to the rim, ultimately forcing him to throw in a rather awkward position.
In addition, whenever Harden wants to play singles, the Heat’s zone defense range will shrink in order to facilitate the defense. For example, in this wave of defense in the video below, when Harden starts to cut in, the Heat’s defense line immediately shrinks, and the five Heat defenders are all Stay around the restricted area. The Heat’s defensive strategy effectively reduced Harden’s cut-in destructive power. In total, he made only 33.3% of his cuts in this battle, and he also made 3 turnovers.
The secret to the Heat’s new playoff scoring streak: Screening assists
The Heat scored 120 points in this game, setting a new high for the team in this year’s playoffs. The key is to use more screens and the cooperation of the two-person team. The Heat produced a total of 13 Screen Assists in G3 and G4. As many as 15 times, surpassing the sum of the previous two wars.
The Heat’s offense in the first two games seemed a bit monotonous, relying heavily on Jimmy Butler’s massive singles support. However, in this game, the Heat increased the ratio of using pick-and-roll and Handoff, and even used Butler as a bunker. Due to Butler’s recent hot situation, G3 and G4 scored a combined 73 points, so the 76ers defenders did not dare to switch defenses easily. are more likely to get a gap.
When it comes to the Heat’s screening, I have to mention P.J. Tucker’s screening skills, especially his Handoff, which can change between the virtual and the real. The two clips below show Tucker receiving a pass from Butler in the bottom right corner, but with different results. The first wave of Tucker dribbled the ball to the top of the arc, and the solid screen successfully created a chance for Gabe Vincent to cut in and add a penalty; the next wave of Tucker moved in the direction of Vincent again, but Danny Green, who was on Vincent, had already prepared, and he stuck close. And Tucker immediately decided to change direction to deal with the ball on his own.
The shooter decides the winner! G5 verifies this key indicator again
As mentioned in the previous article, the performance of the shooter will be a key factor in determining the direction of the series, and this battle is no exception. After G5 returned to Miami, the Heat team’s three-point shooting rate rose to 39.4%, while the 76ers dropped to 28.1%, which was ultimately reflected in the outcome of the game.
The 76ers still have a lot of gaps in this game, but the shooters’ feel is not ideal. Tyrese Maxey and Georges Niang, who played well in the first two games, combined to make 1 of 10 shots from the outside. Danny Green did not replicate the explosion of G3. Made 2 3-pointers. The 76ers’ perimeter shot selection isn’t much of a problem, it’s just that the shooter group misses too many opportunities.
As for the Heat camp, the best shooter in this battle was Max Strus, who made 4 of 10 shots from the three-point line and scored the second-highest 19 points of the team. Moreover, his scoring methods are quite diverse. In addition to creating gaps in half-court battles through the Flare Screen, there are also three-pointers that follow up on fast breaks, and even pull-up jumpers after pick-and-rolls. But for him, the more important thing is how to continue the feel, because in the first four games of the series, his three-point shooting rate in two games was more than 40%, but there were also less than 30% in two games. The stability seems to need to be strengthened.
Facing the upcoming G6…
According to historical statistics, in the case of a 2-2 tie in the series, the team that wins G5 has an 82% chance of advancing to the next round. This data will affect the players of both sides to some extent. Therefore, compared with the adjustment on the tactical side, the psychological level The adjustment may be equally important. The 76ers need to get back on their feet, and the Heat need to avoid being too relaxed. Whoever is more mentally prepared will have a better chance of winning G6.
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