Sixers look to stay perfect at home vs. Pelicans

The Philadelphia 76ers will be looking to remain undefeated at home when they host the New Orleans Pelicans on Friday.

The Sixers have won their first 13 games at home, the most since winning 22 in a row in their championship season of 1966-67.

"It feels good, but I'd be lying if I told you that it comes with overconfidence," Sixers head coach Brett Brown said. "I just see all the areas that we can get better in. To truly feel the way that I feel and be undefeated with 13 wins at home is good, I suppose. It's a great place to play and we have a fantastic crowd."

Philadelphia defeated the Boston Celtics 115-109 on Thursday and was led by Joel Embiid with 38 points, 13 rebounds and six assists. Tobias Harris added 23 points for the Sixers, who have won four in a row overall.

Embiid was criticized by TNT analysts Shaquille O'Neal and Charles Barkley after Tuesday's win against Denver for not performing at a higher level this season.

"He was motivated by it," Harris said of Embiid following the win on TNT. "He takes criticism well."

The Sixers are 6-7 on the road and now return to their comfortable home court looking to extend an impressive winning streak.

"It says we have a great crowd," Harris said. "We just have really good focus here. Every time we get on the floor, we embrace our fans and energy. Every night they bring that energy to us and we've got a great vibe here, night after night, so it says a lot about our, what you could call, home-court advantage."

The Pelicans will be attempting to avoid an 11th consecutive defeat when they visit the Sixers. New Orleans is 6-19 with just two wins in 12 road games.

In their most recent road game, the Pelicans fell 127-112 to the Milwaukee Bucks. Guard J.J. Redick, a former Sixer, led the way with a season-best 31 points. Brandon Ingram added 25 points and 10 rebounds while Jrue Holiday, another former Sixer, had 21 points.

Prized No. 1 overall draft pick Zion Williamson has been recovering from a knee injury and has yet to play this season.

The Pelicans struggled from the opening tip and trailed by 23 points at halftime.

"It's the quietest group I've ever been around, even on the plane and in the meal room," Pelicans head coach Alvin Gentry said. "But we do have to get them talking on the court and have them communicate on the court. When we do, we're pretty solid. I thought we did a good job in the second half of communicating. But when you're trying to come back from 25-to-28-point deficits, the least little thing is going to have a glaring effect."

Redick, who has always been known as a boisterous player, reportedly spoke to the team in the locker room at halftime.

"It's not like this is the first time we've had a talk at halftime," Redick said. "I would say emotionally sometimes you reach a tipping point. That's the timing of that."

During the losing skid, there are still lessons to be gleaned.

"You either win or you learn," Gentry said. "I think the guys are still playing hard. We just have these moments, these stretches where we struggle some and go away from what we're doing."

--Field Level Media
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