- May 8, 2002
- Reaction score
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The Philadelphia 76ers are moving on to the Eastern Conference semifinals, overwhelming the dogged but outgunned Miami Heat to earn a convincing and impressive 4-1 win, It’s just Philly’s second trip to the second round in the last 15 seasons, and it’s the first playoff series victory for rising stars Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons, Dario Saric … and, for that matter, head coach Brett Brown. Nobody has more fully borne the weight of the 76ers’ yearslong rebuilding process than Brown, who took the lead job in Philadelphia just over a month after a just-hired general manager named Sam Hinkie began dismantling a decent-but-not-good-enough team by trading All-Star point guard Jrue Holiday for Nerlens Noel, an enticing defensive prospect who maybe wasn’t going to play as a rookie after tearing the ACL in his left knee, and a future first-round draft pick.