HomeSportsTyrese Maxey’s Career Performance Drives Sixers Past Raptors

Tyrese Maxey’s Career Performance Drives Sixers Past Raptors


Tyrese Maxey #0 of the Philadelphia 76ers dribbles against the Toronto Raptors during the first half of their basketball game at the Scotiabank Arena on October 26, 2022 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Most of Philadelphia may have been distracted by the Phillies World Series matchup, but Tyrese Maxey was putting on a show of his own north of the border. In the second consecutive matchup with the Toronto Raptors, the Sixers cruised to a 112-90 victory despite Joel Embiid missing the game due to right knee injury management. Maxey took it upon himself to lead the Sixers to a win and did just this by playing like a man on a mission.

In his 40 minutes of play, Maxey tallied a career-high 44 points in addition to eight rebounds and four assists. He shot 15-20 from the field and connected on a career-high 9 of his 12 three-point attempts. The 21-year-old started the game hot going a perfect 10-10 from the field in the first half. He even ended with the best true shooting percentage for a 40-point scorer of his age in NBA history.

Maxey’s Role In The Win

With Embiid out there were some notable stylistic changes to the team. The Sixers played with increased tempo and did a much better job getting up and down the court. Maxey was at the forefront of this change with James Harden also pushing the pace more than is traditionally seen in his game.

One of the biggest takeaways of the Sixers’ preseason was that Maxey looked ready to fully establish himself on the NBA scene. He has opened eyes with his play already in his career, but taking the next step and becoming a borderline All-Star looked to be in the cards entering the season. The Kentucky product played like this tonight and made his announcement to the NBA world once again.

With the small-ball lineup getting the start, and no Embiid to share the floor with, Maxey looked to consciously be searching for his shot more. He used his downhill pace to create his jumper and mixed in a healthy dose of hesitation moves to create his shot. Prior to the night, his career-high in points was 39 against the Nuggets last year. He soared past this total with his 44 and this total was vital to the Sixers’ win.

Maxey’s Role Moving Forward

The ceiling of this Sixers team is greatly reliant on the level of play from Harden and Embiid. However, Maxey has more than earned his spot in the offensive pecking order. The pace he plays with is an intriguing change compared to the Sixers’ two stars and must be utilized more. Even after the improved effort in the previous matchup, Philadelphia ranks last in the NBA in pace. Giving Maxey more on-ball opportunities where he can open things up could be the key to changing this.

During the victory over the Raptors, Maxey recorded a team-high +29 rating. The next highest on the team was P.J. Tucker with a +15 rating. The third-year guard made each of the players around him better and unlocked the offense due to the scoring threat he proved to be. The young guard has proven to come up large in every opportunity the Sixers have asked of him, and it may be time to think about putting more on his plate.

It is terrific to watch these splash-in-the-pan dominant performances from Maxey, but the Sixers cannot afford to let him become an afterthought in the offense. Creating more sets to maximize his pace and unique skillset alongside Harden and Embiid will improve the team greatly. The Texas native attempted 20 and 21 field goal attempts during the last two games against the Raptors, but in the four games to start the season averaged just 14.5 shots per game.

As Philadelphia continues to search for its identity as a team, Maxey must be a bigger part of it than has been the case early on this season. Harden has answered the call regarding his ability to start the season. Now it may be up to the Sixers to further explore how much of a role Maxey can handle and see if there is a true trio growing at the top of the Sixers roster.

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