Sixers struggle at home, as Cavs roll to eighth straight win

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By Josh Liddick, Sports Talk Philly editor 

If you were looking for a close game, you didn't get a close game.

If you were looking for something that kept you entertained for 2+ hours, you didn't get that either.

The Philadelphia 76ers (11-8) struggled to get much of anything going and they paid the price, a 113-91 drubbing by the hands of the Cleveland Cavaliers(13-7) on Monday night.

Whenever the Sixers tried to get something going, the Cavs found a way around and were able to keep the game far apart that the Sixers were unable to take the lead.

The players the Sixers had hoped would get the team back into the game failed them in so many different ways. The Sixers that were out on the court tonight surely didn't seem like the team that was in the middle of a three-game winning streak.

For most of the contest, the Sixers looked flat, and quite honestly looked like a team that had little to no interest in winning this ballgame.

What else can be said about LeBron James? The King was magnificent on the floor for Cleveland, and really showcased his abilities like he always does.

He played angry at times, and can you blame him? After all the Ben Simmons comparison questions early Monday morning, LeBron looked like he was striving to show how unique his game is compared to Simmons.

LeBron finished with a healthy 30 points on 12-of-22 shooting from the field. He added 13 rebounds to his six assists.

As a starting five, the Cavs struggled offensively, with the bulk of the scoring coming from the bench and the second team. There were three scorers off the bench with double-digit points.

Dwyane Wade had 15 points, Jeff Green had 14, and Channing Frye had 12. Green also had 10 boards and three dimes.

Kevin Love, lived up to his preview prediction, really unable to get much going on offense, considering he had to do his best down low in the post up against Joel Embiid all night.

He finished with 13 points on 4-of-12 from the field, three rebounds, and two assists. Not a very productive night for the 29-year-old out of UCLA.

The Sixers were downright awful shooting the ball from long range, and from many accounts, that probably is the main reason the team was unable to come back and make this game any type of competitive contest.

They were 3-of-28 from three point range for a measley 10.7-percent. Not good for a Sixers team who was ninth in the NBA in three-point shooting going into the game.

Robert Covington, known for his tight defensive coverage and hot-hand from long range was a team-worst 0-for-9 from deep. Good shooters have poor nights every once in a while, but tonight was just ugly for Ro-Co.

Joel Embiid was Joel Embiid for the Sixers and played well in the third quarter, almost single-handedly leading the Sixers to go down by as little as three points. Biid had 30 points and 11 rebounds, and went 8-of-9 from the free throw line.

Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot, TJ McConnell, and Amir Johnson were sparkplugs for the Sixers offense off the bench and were reasons why the game stayed close at times. TLC had 12 points, McConnell had 11 points, six rebounds, and three assists, and Amir Johnson had five rebounds and finished with a plus-6 while he was out on the floor.

Many had thought that the Sixers were going to get a productive night out of Ben Simmons, but he just didn't live up to the hype that people had placed upon him.

Honestly, a rookie shouldn't have pressure to be like LeBron James, but that's just how the world works sometimes.

Ben had 10 points, eight rebounds, three steals, and two assists. He turned in a fine night on the court, but compared to LeBron's night, it doesn't exactly do it justice.

Important to note, Simmons left the game in the fourth quarter with an ankle sprain.

The place that the Sixers really struggled in finding their rhythm was when LeBron was on the bench. They could've very easily took over the game while LeBron was resting, but they never took off, with the Cavs bench doing a lot of the dirty work and then giving the reins back to LeBron with a lead.

The Sixers had opportunities to win the game, but just wasn't able to have the moment they had hoped to have.

Playing against tougher opponents has not been the Sixers' cup of tea all season long. If they are hoping to get things going and become the playoff team people are pegging them as, they need to learn how to not only win these kind of games, but also to avoid silly mistakes that lead to them blowing chances at winning games.

At the end of the day, the end result of this game should have been a lot closer, as the game at times was a lot closer than the score shows.

The Sixers will look to re-group after snapping their three-game winning streak when the Washington Wizards come to town on Wednesday night.