Pierce stuck with a lineup of Jeremy Lin, DeAndre’ Bembry, Kevin Huerter, John Collins and Dewayne Dedmon. The 76ers had demonstrated that they were going to attack the diminutive Trae Young, on the defensive end, if he were to remain in the game. The only time Pierce went a different direction was when he inserted Justin Anderson for Lin for defensive possessions when a substitution was available (dead balls and time outs).
The Hawks would lean on their pick and roll sets and increasingly use the rookie Huerter to attack as the game wound down the final stretch. Philadelphia’s defense was prioritizing keeping Collins off of the rim and Lin out of the paint. As a result, on numerous possessions, the ball would be routed to Huerter with little time to act. But his decision making and execution was so solid that he would basically serve as the team’s de facto point guard during the final two minutes of play.
Both Jeremy Lin and Alex Len contributed 9 points respectively in reserve play. Len was useful when the Sixers deployed small lineups with Simmons defending at the center position. Lin added three assists. It was not his most impressive statistical output but the threat he posed in the pick and roll is what set up almost everything the Hawks were able to get down the stretch offensively. He also took tough defensive assignments to eliminate any opportunity for Philadelphia to try to get their bigger players isolated on Young.