An ovation for a Pittsburgher in Philly: T.J. McConnell is 76ers' hero in Game 4
With the Penguins playoff run done earlier than hoped, the wounded sports city of Pittsburgh turns its eyes to ... Philadelphia?
Whoa. That can't be right. Let's try that again.
With the Penguins playoff run done earlier than hoped, the wounded sports city of Pittsburgh turns its eyes to .. the NBA?
OK. Now we are really getting nuts.
But it's true. Pittsburgh has turned out a true NBA postseason star.
Well, at least for a night.
Having won enough between Villanova and the Eagles, the Flyers bowed out to the Pens in the Stanley Cup playoffs. Now, the 76ers are about to do the same against the Celtics.
Boston got out to a 3-0 lead in that best-of-seven series. And when you get out to a 3-0 lead in the NBA, you just don't lose it. It's never happened before .
However, Philly kept itself alive for one night in Game 5 thanks to T.J. McConnell.
The Chartiers Valley product was a desperation substitution into the starting lineup. He replaced Robert Covington, who hadn't made a field goal in his previous three postseason games.
McConnell delivered big time with 19 points, five assists and seven rebounds. He was 9 of 12 from the floor.
McConnell was a major contributor for much of the season in Philadelphia. His minutes peaked at 26 in December, but dropped to 15 in April. His average was a mere 3.0 points per game in the playoffs.
McConnell's explosion last night drew a standing ovation from the crowd in Philly and they chanted his name after 39 minutes on the floor.
The 76ers prevailed 103-92 in Game 4 to extend the series. McConnell spoke afterward.
Game 5 is tomorrow at 8 p.m.