By Michael Bennett

The Sixers are in Milwaukee tonight to play the Bucks, and their timing couldn’t be better.

After dropping four straight games sit seventh in the Eastern Conference, 1 1/2 games behind the resurgent Sixers — who have won 9 of their last 11 games, the Bucks have a whiff of desperation.

Joel Embiid is averaging 24 points and 12 rebounds during that stretch while Rookie of the Year candidate Ben Simmons has been averaging close to a triple-double.

Embiid had 23 points with 14 rebounds and three blocked shots Friday night as Philly rallied from 14 down to beat the Charlotte Hornets in the second game of a back-to-back set that started a night earlier with a victory against the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Ersan Ilyasova added 18 but was crucial down the stretch, scoring 11 points in the final 12 minutes.

“We found a way to come back, win at home, and reload on a back-to-back,” coach Brett Brown said.

As the 76ers gear up for their own playoff run, Brown is hoping to shore up some of his team’s remaining loose ends, especially when it comes to 3-point shooting.

Having Ilyasova and Marco Belinelli will take care of most of the Sixers’ long-range attempts, but Brown would like to see the 7-foot-2 Embiid get more involved from beyond the arc, too.

“I really want him to shoot six to eight threes a game — and so how does that happen and he is still an interior presence, a paint-catch guy?” Brown said.

“The 3-point line is where the sport is headed and will rear its head during the playoffs. And our point guards don’t shoot threes.”




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