Philadelphia 76ers defeat No. 4 seed Detroit Pistons in the East

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Joel Embid and James Harden are heading to Toronto for the playoffs. Defensive specialist Matisse Thybulle remains for road games; he is not fully vaccinated and prohibited from entering Canada.

Embiid sat out after clinching the scoring title and Harden joined him on the bench, leaving Shake Milton and Tyrese Maxey to lead the Philadelphia 76ers to a 118-106 win over the Detroit Pistons on Sunday night.

The Sixers finished with the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs and will open against Toronto.

“We knew that pretty much before the game,” coach Doc Rivers said. “Then we will be ready.”

They will try to beat the Raptors without Thybulle.

Unvaccinated foreign nationals are currently not permitted to enter Canada. Limited exemptions to the rule no longer apply to professional athletes. Rivers said Thybulle would be “ineligible” for Games 3 and 4.

Thybulle said he was raised in a “holistic home” and refused to be fully vaccinated. He said he felt the need to get vaccinated last season but didn’t do any more, saying: “I felt like I had a strong base of medical resources that could help me. serve beyond what this vaccine could do for me.

“It wasn’t the result I wanted,” he said. “It’s always hard not to be available.”

Thybulle said he accepted his decision could hurt the Sixers, his reputation and his future earnings, but he saw no benefit he could derive from trying “alternative medicine”.

“I made that choice and I thought I could keep it to myself, I could keep it quiet,” Thybulle said.

Milton scored 30 points, and Maxey and Paul Reed had 25. Luka Garza led the Pistons with 20 points and 10 rebounds.

Embiid sat at the end of the bench and Harden pulled the hood of his sweatshirt over his head and they both watched as the Sixers rallied with a 15-point lead to knock the Pistons to 59 losses.

Allen Iverson was in the house and the last Sixer to win a scoring title – four, in fact – was able to share the arena with this season’s champion. Embiid finished at 30.6 points per game. Milwaukee Giannis Antetokounmpo also rested on Sunday, finishing at 29.9 points. Embiid posted those numbers in just 33.8 minutes per game, the fewest minutes averaged in a season by the champion goalscorer in the stopwatch era. He also became the first international player to win a scoring and first center title since Shaquille O’Neal in 1999-00.

Sixers fans erupted in “MVP! MVP!” chants for Embiid when he was celebrated on the big screen for his goalscoring title.

Harden also won one game and averaged 21 points and 7.1 rebounds in 21 games with the Sixers. He’s been struggling with hamstring issues since playing with Brooklyn – the Nets sent him to Philadelphia for Ben Simmons in a trade delay deal – but Rivers said Harden is fine.

“He’s in a good position, I can tell,” Rivers said. “Conditioning wise, he’s in a good place. We have a week to improve things a bit. The hamstring, from everything they’re telling me, is in a really good place. That’s the biggest concern, but I don’t have much. Going through our staff, they feel pretty good with him.

Rivers will give the Sixers a day off Monday and use Tuesday for movies before kicking off playoff practices.

TIPS :

76ers: DeAndre Jordan had 11 rebounds.

Pistons: Former Villanova star Saddiq Bey started all 82 games. … Cade Cunningham sat down.

HE SAID IT

“We’re not going to do a Paul Reed victory tour. We’re trying to win a championship, man. – Rivers, shooting down questions that Reed could have a bigger role in the playoffs.

LOOK AHEAD

Pistons coach Dwane Casey says there’s plenty to be excited about next season. Casey said the best part of this season was the “growth” and how they played close to .500 after the All-Star break.

“Just watch them grow,” he said. “A lot of games weren’t synonymous with victory, but the growth is there. It will be evident in the future.”

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