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Undermanned Rockets fall 135-115 to Sixers after excellent Philly second half

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6 men aren’t enough to take down the 76ers.

NBA: Philadelphia 76ers at Houston Rockets POOL PHOTOS-USA TODAY Sports

The Houston Rockets couldn’t stand Philadelphia’s second-half barrage, as they fall 135-115 to the 76ers on Wednesday night.

The Rockets had little defensive resistance for the Sixers offense in the first quarter.

To open the game, Philadelphia shot a blistering 5-of-7 from three, 6-6 from the free-throw line, and a total of 14-25 from the field.

Even though Philly scorched Houston for 39 first-quarter points, the Rockets scored 30 of their own to keep the game interesting after just 12 minutes.

Kelly Olynyk led the way for Houston in scoring with seven points, three rebounds, two assists, and a block. The Juniors followed behind him, with Kenyon Martin Jr. racking up five points, and Kevin Porter Junior scoring four points to go with his four assists. KPJ also had the smoothest bucket of the first.

The second quarter was more of the same for Houston, with them being unable to stop anyone. Well — that’s not entirely true. They did have a lot of success smothering Joel Embiid down low and making life difficult for him in the first half. But he was still able to muster up 17 points and nine boards on 5-of-12 shooting from the field and a crucial 7-8 from the free-throw line.

The Sixers continued their hot shooting from deep, knocking down five of their 10 attempts in the second. The Rockets actually had a great half from deep, shooting 11-28 for 39.3% from downtown, but that was overtaken by Philly’s 58.8% from three for the half.

It could’ve gotten more out of hand for Houston, going down by as much as 15 in the second after going down by 11 in the first, but the Rockets battled through to go into halftime 75-63.

Olynyk continued his offensive success, scoring 16 points and seven rebounds on 6-10 shooting. K.J. Martin had 13 points on 5-7 shooting, 2-3 from deep. Porter Jr. had 12 points and five assists on 5-11 shooting.

It might not have been a made basket, but K.J. Martin had probably the coolest moment of the first half.

If you thought things couldn’t get any worse for Houston, the already short-handed Rockets lost Kevin Porter Jr. in the middle of the third quarter after Porter rolled his left ankle and was out for the rest of the game with an ankle sprain. That gave the Rockets only six available players for the match.

Porter Jr. left the game with 16 points and five assists on 6-13 shooting.

There wasn’t much good to report on the third quarter after the 76ers got complete control of the game, with their lead getting up to as much as 19 and then closing the quarter with a 108-91 lead. But, there was a great moment when Olynyk nutmegged Embiid for a KJ slam.

As expected, this game was over quickly in the fourth quarter. The 76ers had way too much firepower, and the Rockets had literally almost no man power.

Olynyk led the Rockets in scoring with 27 points, 11 rebounds, six assists, and a career-high four blocks on 9/16 shooting from the field. K.J. Martin had his best game of his young career with 23 points, 10 rebounds, six assists, and a block on 10-17 shooting from the field. Anthony Lamb and Armoni Brooks, knowing they literally couldn’t be swapped out, let the ball fly. Lamb had 22 points and six boards after going 7-15 from the field. Brooks had 20 points on 7-16 shooting, 6-14 from deep.

For the Sixers, Joel Embiid had a casual 34 points and 12 rebounds on 10-17 shooting. Tobias Harris had 15 points, Ben Simmons had 10, Seth Curry had 11, and Dwight Howard 10 and eight rebounds. Shake Milton came up big with 19 points on 8-17 shooting.

Houston drops to 16-49 on the season. The Rockets will get a day of rest before they go on to Milwaukee to face the Bucks on Friday.