Wednesday night’s matchup between the Philadelphia 76ers and Brooklyn Nets wasn’t just any normal game.
It had a true playoff atmosphere as these two teams faced off against one another.
This was partly because both teams are fighting hard to come out on top in the East and have quickly become rivals.
But it was also because the game featured the return of Ben Simmons, a former 76er and now villain on the streets of Philadelphia.
Fans of the 76ers didn’t just want Simmons beaten, they wanted him embarrassed too.
James Harden put it BETWEEN Ben Simmons’ legs to Joel Embiid for the bucket pic.twitter.com/BWo3N0XnoG
— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) January 26, 2023
There was a small moment of embarrassment for Simmons at the hands of James Harden during the second quarter.
After gaining possession of the ball, Harden was immediately guarded by Simmons.
When Simmons leapt in the air in anticipation of a shot, Harden decided to pass to Joel Embiid through his outstretched legs.
Embiid then followed that up with an easy two points.
The crowd ate this all up.
Most importantly, they loved to see Harden assist in that way and the teamwork between him and Embiid is something that they want more of.
But also, they enjoyed seeing Simmons get played like that.
Simmons scored 12 points, 5 rebounds, and 5 assists for the night while Harden was good for 23, 3, and 7.
Harden has long been known as one of the best in the league when it comes to assists and this was a prime example of that.
Over the last few years, we haven’t seen as many explosives assists like this from Harden.
But perhaps he just needed a rival like Simmons and the Nets to really get the fire going inside of him.NEXT: First-Half Season Grades For 76ers Offense And Defense