Sixers dish at least 30 assists for 24th time in win over Timberwolves

Moving the ball has been a strength for the Philadelphia 76ers this season, and they showed why Saturday night during their win over the Minnesota Timberwolves.

The Sixers defeated the Timberwolves 118-109 on the road, and they tallied 32 assists. According to Sixers Stats, this game marks the 24th time the Sixers have dished at least 30 assists this season. Philly is one of the best teams in the NBA at sharing the ball, as it’s ranked fourth in the league for assists per game (26.9).

With Ben Simmons running the Sixers’ offense, the Sixers have one of the most fluid offenses in the league. Though Joel Embiid was out (load management), the Sixers still have a foundation on offense that allows them to prosper on that end of the floor.

Simmons’ ability to drive through the lane is Philly’s base. With Simmons being a threat in the paint, he creates space for his teammates to flourish. In the video below, Simmons did a good job of drawing attention to himself, as he made Minnesota think he’d pass to Tobias Harris or continue to drive.

But with his vision, Simmons made a good pass and found Jimmy Butler cutting through the paint.

Simmons led the team with nine assists, and he was one shy of grabbing a triple-double. This season, Simmons is averaging 7.8 assists per game, and he ranks sixth in the league for the category.

Though Simmons is the Sixers’ lead facilitator, this team doesn’t move the ball well solely because of his playmaking skills. Players such as Harris, JJ Redick and Mike Scott move without the ball well, and with the team being unselfish, that creates opportunities for a plethora of assists.

In the video below, T.J. McConnell did well finding Scott as he rolled off a screen. With McConnell’s precise bounce pass, Scott was set up perfectly for an easy layup.

Butler, who is one of Philly’s secondary ballhandlers, also does well in orchestrating the team’s offense.

On one play in the halfcourt, Butler found Harris making a backdoor cut, and he made a good bounce pass to lead him to the hoop. Butler has averaged 4.1 assists per game with the Sixers this season.

With the Sixers routinely sharing the ball, they make for a tough team to beat. According to Basketball Reference, the Sixers are 20-4 when they tally at least 30 assists.

As the Sixers come off their second straight win, they will head to Dallas to play the Mavericks on Monday at 8:30 p.m. EST.

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