3 takeaways from the Celtics' nail-biting, series-clinching victory over the 76ers

3 takeaways from the Celtics' nail-biting, series-clinching victory over the 76ers

"One guy offered me $1,000 for it and I said 'No way, '" said Freedman.

If the Sixers can't get the right big-time free agent despite their abundance of salary cap room, they still might get better by chipping away. And he sent the Sixers home, undoubtedly wondering what might have been.

Some observers didn't even expect the Sixers, a league laughingstock during their rebuild, to reach the playoffs this season.

Antonio Brown, 35, sits for a portrait while watching the Sixers play the Boston Celtics in Game 5 of the National Basketball Association playoffs in South Philadelphia May 9. The duo helped Philly finish the regular season 52-30, capturing the No. 3 seed, before the 76ers disposed of Miami, 4-1, in the first round. More than anything, his performance this postseason should lay to rest any such notion. At a quick glance, it would seem the Sixers were dominated in the second-round matchup, but aside from the series opener that was certainly not the case.

Fultz did not hit the floor in the five-game series loss to the Celtics, with head coach Brett Brown instead electing to play T.J. McConnell, first as Simmons' back up and later as a starting guard. You can not expect the referees to call many fouls late in a playoff game.

That's a good thing.

Simmons still needs a suitable shot. During the season he added shooter Marco Belinelli and power forward Ersan Ilyasova to a roster with Embiid and Simmon.

But the issue for the Sixers is that they're probably not done seeing Tatum in these situations. Before that, the Sixers had made a decision to give McConnell the backup point-guard minutes over Fultz.

"This is my first year going into a summer healthy", he said. That might require a significant mechanical change, rotating the flared elbow on his shooting arm in to remove the tilted spin on the ball that acts like kryptonite on the rim.

Embiid got his own rebound after two missed shots, but then he lost the ball out of bounds as a result of a good defensive play by Celtics guard Terry Rozier.

The Sixers young core learned a valuable lesson this playoffs that will help them to improve the next time around. "I believe we can make to the Finals". They were plus-48 when he didn't play. You can say to them as much as you want, that you've got to do this or do this or that.

Celtics center Aron Baynes should have been called for a shooting foul when Sixers big man Embiid attempted a game-tying layup with 14.6 seconds remaining.

There will be plenty of time to dissect all of these things.

"If we would have had the same physicality and aggression we played with the last two, I think it would be a different series".

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