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Doc Rivers blasts Sixers for poor effort in loss to Grizzlies

Doc Rivers, Sixers

Heading into the game with a two-game winning streak, the Philadelphia 76ers were stopped in their tracks by the Memphis Grizzlies, bannered by the returning Ja Morant.

After the loss, Sixers head coach Doc Rivers was critical of his team’s performance and highlighted their lack of effort and focus:

“I didn’t like how we played,” Rivers said, via Derek Bodner of The Athletic. “I thought we were a sloppy basketball team, and when you play that way, you deserve to lose the game. On the road, 22 turnovers is unacceptable.”

“Disappointing loss because it was a very winnable game tonight, and we just didn’t get it done.”

After a tight first quarter, the Sixers found themselves trailing by 12 points heading into the fourth quarter. They attempted to mount a comeback late in the final frame, but the Grizzlies still managed to fend off their offensive attack to snag a 106-104 victory.

Playing without Joel Embiid, Shake Milton stepped up with 28 points off the bench. Ben Simmons nearly recorded a triple-double with 11 points, 16 rebounds and nine assists, but he turned the ball over seven times and shot just 3-of-9 from the field.

On the opposite end, Ja Morant returned from an ankle sprain, which ruled him out for eight games. Morant came out with 17 points and six assists in his first game back and was joined by six other Grizzlies players who scored in double digits.

The loss dragged the Sixers down to a 9-5 record, while the Grizzlies improved to a 6-6 tally to extend their winning streak to four games. Doc Rivers and his squad will aim to bounce back and improve their overall performance on the floor when they visit the Oklahoma City Thunder on Jan. 17.