Doug Collins has promised that his Sixers will become a grind-it-out, half-court team when Andrew Bynum joins the lineup. But what happens when the Sixers have to get down and dirty before that? In Wednesday night's 84-75 victory over the Denver Nuggets in the 2012-13 season opener, we got to see a little bit of how the Sixers will manage without their franchise star (see Instant Replay). Apparently the idea is to put the ball in point guard Jrue Holiday's hands and bring in Spencer Hawes off the bench. Hopefully for the Sixers, the Hawes that shows up is the pre-injury 2011-12 model. Behind a team-high 16 points and 12 rebounds from Hawes and 14 points and 11 assists from Holiday, the Sixers held off a fourth-quarter charge from the Nuggets to win the opener. For the Sixers it took a 13-3 run over the final 4:15 to close it out after the Nuggets crept back to within one point. It also took some big plays on offense from Holiday and some strong work in the paint on defense from Hawes to close it out. Hawes finished the game with five blocks -- all of them coming in the second half -- his most since joining the Sixers in 2010. Meanwhile, with the Sixers clinging to that one-point lead, Holiday completed a three-point play on a drive to the hoop to extend the lead. Hawes then blocked a layup from Ty Lawson, corralled the rebound and ran the floor where he got a return pass from Holiday for a short, baseline jumper.
Hawes, Holiday help Sixers grind out win to open season
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