Wednesday, January 26 2022

The Philadelphia 76ers came up short again on Thursday as they fell to the Toronto Raptors at home 115-109 after falling apart late. The Sixers had a chance to get it done down the stretch, but they, unfortunately, were not able to get the job done.

They did get some much-needed reinforcements in this one with the return of Tobias Harris. The team needed some help out on the floor and one of their best players provided it with 19 points, seven rebounds, and seven assists while playing 36:44. That is a surprising number considering that a bout with COVID can really affect a person’s endurance.

“He looked great,” said coach Doc Rivers. “I thought early on he really struggled just handling the ball. That’s one thing when guys miss games, the first thing that goes is ball-handling. He had a couple of them where he just fumbled the ball and lost it, but that’s honestly typical. I don’t know how he was in such great shape. I’m not shocked. Out of all the people you would pick to be in shape after COVID, it would probably be Tobias.”

The only thing that Harris struggled with was shooting the ball. He shot 7-for-18 from the floor and he was 1-for-6 from deep. Those shooting numbers are not like him so that will continue to be a bit of a work in progress.

“I felt alright out there,” said Harris. “Obviously, first game back in some time, but overall I was still able to go out there and play 36 minutes. I got a little fatigued out there in some settings, but that’s part of the way of working myself back into it. It’s just progress from there.”

It was obvious the Sixers missed him. They really needed somebody who could score from the perimeter while also being the leader that they so desperately need at this point with the team going through a tough time.

“It does a lot for us,” said Tyrese Maxey. “We know who Tobias Harris is, we know what he brings to the table offensively and defensively, and I think just leadership and voice as well. For him to come back after what he had going on and play 36 minutes is tough. We really appreciate him.”

The good thing is, at least Harris is back. The Sixers really needed him back out on the floor and they now have their leader back with them.

“I’m just happy to get out there and play,” he finished. “That’s the biggest thing to be healthy enough to go out there and play basketball. I’m definitely blessed and fortunate to do that.”

This post originally appeared on Sixers Wire! Follow us on Facebook!

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