THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS TO SIXERS WHEN JOJO SCORES ONLY 19!

By Tommy Matthews

The Sixers bubble of winning without James Harden and Tyrese Maxey burst last night in Cleveland.

Early and with a mess.

Caris LeVert scored 22 points off the bench, Darius Garland had 21 points and nine assists and the Cavaliers routed the 76ers 113-85.

Donovan Mitchell added 18 points and six assists for Cleveland, which led by a season-high 33 points in the fourth quarter. The Cavaliers are 9-1 at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, the third-best home mark in the NBA.

All-Star center Joel Embiid led the Sixers with 19 points, six rebounds and six assists, and Shake Milton scored 14 points. The 76ers had their three-game win streak snapped in the opener of a three-game trip.

Philadelphia’s starting backcourt of All-Star Harden and Maxey remains out with injuries. The 76ers had won five straight over Cleveland.

The Cavaliers played without All-Star center Jarrett Allen, who missed his third consecutive game with a low back bruise.

Cleveland shot a scorching 94.1% in the second quarter and scored 44 points, two shy of its franchise record, to carry a 69-48 advantage into the break. Mobley went 8 of 10 from the field in the first half, soundly outplaying Embiid.

Embiid missed a pair of technical free throws and was whistled for one of his own in his second game back after missing four straight with a sprained left mid-foot.

“The Cavs compete and they’re going to be tough for a long time,” 76ers coach Doc Rivers said. “I think it helps that the clear stars are Donovan and Garland, so everyone else has to play their roles.”

 

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