76ers look to escape home mediocrity vs. Pelicans

The Philadelphia 76ers have been successful on the road all season.

The goal now is to be equally strong at home.

In a bizarre season, the Sixers have gone 17-9 on the road and 10-10 at home. They will host the New Orleans Pelicans on Tuesday night looking to move above .500 on their home court.

«It doesn’t make sense, honestly,» said Sixers center Joel Embiid, who had 38 points, 12 rebounds and six assists in a 115-109 road victory over the San Antonio Spurs on Sunday night. «In the past, we used to drive off the support from the fans at home and this year has been the opposite. I always try to play extremely well at home, but it seems, I don’t know, on the road, it just seems to be sort of that we are more together on the road.»

The Pelicans’ visit will be the first of five in a row at home for Philadelphia. If the Sixers can string together some wins, they would be able to strengthen their sixth-place position in the Eastern Conference.

«At home, we obviously want to be on our best on a nightly basis,» Philadelphia’s Tobias Harris said. «So we know that we have to be locked in as well and be comfortable as a team and just go out there and find our flow and our rhythm. We haven’t been our best at home this year, but there’s a chance now to make up some ground.»

Seth Curry (ankle), Danny Green (hip) and Shake Milton (back) will remain out for the 76ers on Tuesday, but Matisse Thybulle, who has missed five games with a shoulder injury, was upgraded to questionable.

The Pelicans will be searching for their third consecutive win when they visit the Sixers.

Despite playing without Brandon Ingram (ankle), New Orleans had six players score in double figures during a 117-113 home win over the Indiana Pacers on Monday.

Devonte’ Graham led the way with 25 points. Josh Hart added 22 points and 10 rebounds, and Jonas Valanciunas had 16 points and 12 rebounds. Garrett Temple, Jaxson Hayes and Nickeil Alexander-Walker each scored 14 in the balanced effort.

Hart has steadily improved since entering the league in 2017-18, and this season has been no different. He is averaging career highs in points (13.5) and assists (4.2), and his rebounding average (7.6) is his second best.

«When you have your coach have trust and confidence in you, it’s a big thing,» Hart said. «It kind of gives you the freedom to go out there and play the game. It’s really making me a better player and a better teammate.»

The Pelicans had lost five straight road games before beating the Knicks in New York on Friday. They added onto that success by downing the Pacers.

Hart sustained an ankle injury in the third quarter (Monday) but wasn’t sidelined long before returning to action.

«I twisted it, but in the moment there’s always adrenaline running,» he said. «I’m sure it will be sore (Tuesday), but it was just about competing and winning.»

–Field Level Media

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