The Philadelphia 76ers did a solid job slowing down Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic, but they couldn't take advantage as Dallas cruised to a 109-91 win at American Airlines Center.
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The 76ers held Doncic to just 19 points on 4-of-15 shooting, thanks largely to the performance of Ben Simmons.
Simmons hounded Doncic in the pick-and-roll from the jump, with the 76ers forcing eight first-quarter turnovers, with Simmons recording four steals in the period.
😤@BenSimmons25 | #PhilaUnite pic.twitter.com/4jLh1Y4N8q- Philadelphia 76ers (@sixers) January 12, 2020
Philly extended their lead into the half, up 50-41, before the Mavs came to life.
The Mavs outscored the 76ers 32-16 in the third, to turn a nine-point deficit into a 73-66 lead, which grew to as many as 21 points in the fourth quarter.
With Dallas finding their stride, the 76ers were unable to buy a bucket in the third, going 5-of-21 from the field and 2-of-8 from beyond the arc.
Overall, it was their worst shooting performance of the season, connecting on 37.8 percent from the field and 24.3 percent from three (9-of-37).
The Mavs had five players score in double figures, with Dwight Powell recording 19 points and 12 rebounds, Dorian Finney-Smith 16 points, and Tim Hardaway Jr.12 points and nine rebounds. Doncic added 12 assists and eight rebounds to go with his 19 points.
Maxi Kleber turned in an impressive two-way performance, knocking down three triples on his way to 10 points and eight rebounds.
Maxi hit big shots and played even bigger defense tonight!@MaxiKleber | #MFFL- Dallas Mavericks (@dallasmavs) January 12, 2020
🗳️: https://t.co/6MX70A3WIB pic.twitter.com/I8Oe2rJMcP
Tobias Harris led the 76ers with 20 points and 10 rebounds, while Al Horford and Josh Richardson added 16 points apiece. Ben Simmons finished with 11 points, 11 assists, five rebounds and four steals on the night, however he was held scoreless in the second half.
The 76ers now sit at 25-15 on the season and 7-13 away from Wells Fargo Center. They played without Joel Embiid for the second-straight game and are 4-5 without the All-Star big man this season.
The 25-year-old underwent successful surgery on a torn ligament in his left hand and will be re re-evaluated in 1-2 weeks.