The Sixers/Nets dropped to 0-5 in the OPSL as the Boston Celtics picked up the victory, 92-79, behind strong play from Nick Fazekas.
There were significantly less people at Friday’s contest compared to the rest of the week; not only onlookers, but players too.
With only seven players dressed for the “Scrapple” (see yesterday’s recap in case you missed the name change) and eight available for the Celtics, all the players still here in Florida got plenty of playing time.
Fazekas, who averaged 11.3 in 20 minutes over the first four days, took advantage. He knocked down 10 of 17 from the field, posting 22 points and 9 boards.
The Celtics extended a seven-point halftime lead to 17 by the end of the third quarter, helped by the Sixers/Nets frustration and a pair of Scrapple technicals.
Marresse Speights was flying under the radar most of the game before hitting a 20-footer and completing an alley-oop from Gary Forbes as part of Sixers/Nets 8-2 run that cut the Boston lead to eight with just over four minutes remaining.
The Scrapple would not be able to get closer than seven though as the Celtics responded with a 12-4 run to push the lead to 92-77 before a last second layin by PHI/NJ.
Speights, who Sixers head coach Eddie Jordan said “wanted to be here,” was not happy with his performance over the course of the week.
“I thought I would [be more dominant],” Speights said. “But things happen, and stuff didn’t go my way really, so I just gotta move on.”
Speights said he would move on by working on his post play over the course of the summer.
“I gotta work on my post game more…go back to it like I was in college, I’m didn’t really post up last year, so I’m not really used to it.”
Jrue Holiday made a couple of nice plays at both ends of the floor, but was a little sloppy as he forced a few passes.
Holiday, who had eight points, four assists and four rebounds, as well as three turnovers, said he thought he got a lot out of the OPSL.
“I think I grew as a point guard, there’s a lot of stuff that I learned, definitely from the coaches and the players I played with, so I think it went well.”
As to whether playing on a split-squad affected the team’s performance, Holiday broke it down to the team simply not showing enough energy.
“It was still a team, there were a lot of players that haven’t played with anybody, we just didn’t play well together at times, there were times that we picked it up and we got back in the game.”
Blake Ahearn was not on the PHI/NJ bench Friday. He averaged 4.8 points in the four OPSL games that he played.