Embrace the Swaggy P.

Embrace the Swaggy P.

Following his big team-high 23-point scoring outburst and all-around solid performance -- four assists! -- off the bench in the Sixers come-from-behind victory over the Raptors on Tuesday night, Nick "Swaggy P." Young was wearing a sweatshirt that read "Swaggy P." on it. And he was talking about himself in the Swaggy third person.

One might question Madonna wearing a Madonna t-shirt after her own concert. Or LeBron James wearing a t-shirt with his own face on it at a concert after an NBA Finals win. So one also might be inclined to question Swaggy P. I would do no such thing.

"Y'all are here for Swaggy P.?" Young exclaimed, welcoming the throng of reporters surrounding him in the locker room post game.

"Make sure you all go buy one of these," Swaggy said referring to his sweatshirt bearing his name.

The funny thing was he doesn't even know where you can get one because a fan sent it to him. He wasn't even planning on wearing it, he said, but after the Sixers had such a wild successful fourth quarter, he obviously had a change of swag.

Swaggy P. is just going with the flow, shooting the ball when he gets it, high-fiving fans in the middle of a game, and having fun all along the way.

[Related From Last Night: Video: Watch Swaggy P. Make the Same Circus Shot We All Ridiculed Him for Taking Earlier This Month]

You can hate the term "swag" all you want -- hell, I don't really even know what it means exactly. But it works for Nick Young, a guy with plenty of charisma, an unwavering desire to shoot the rock, flashy sneakers and impressively curly/fro-y hair to go along with his big smile. His shot selection at times will most assuredly drive you Lou Williams-esque insane, but when he's on like he was Tuesday night, he's damn fun to root for.

The only assurance I need that "Swaggy P." is the right name to use for Nick Young is the fact that Doug Collins openly refers to "Swaggy" in his post game pressers. Case closed.

"Swaggy quietly has passed the ball very well," Coach Collins said. "I've been very pleased with him."

Perhaps the best part about the Swaggy P. love fest was that it wasn't a one-man show in the explosive fourth quarter. The Sixers got real solid efforts out of a handful of guys, most notably Jrue Holiday, Thad Young, and fellow newcomers Jason Richardson and Dorrell Wright.

During their huge comeback run, the Sixers got clutch shots from Young (,Nick), Wright, and Richardson, with Jrue doing the drive and setup to perfection. Speaking after the game, Holiday talked about how that's when playing is the most fun, when you're surrounded by guys who can drill big threes which can keep you in almost any game. It's quite the difference from a year ago when the only real long ball option was a #M33KS and a prayer.

This team has plenty of scoring options when they can get things going. And Jrue Holiday is learning to orchestrate with the best of them. He made great decisions on Tuesday night.

And as for the custom-made Nick Young gear that made its debut? It may be a hot item this holiday shopping season.

Even Evan Turner wants in on the action, "Swag, give me a t-shirt so I can swag-out too!"

Sixers draw high praise from Warriors after loss to NBA leader

Sixers draw high praise from Warriors after loss to NBA leader

BOX SCORE

The Warriors are the blueprint of a total team in the NBA. They have a star-studded starting lineup and a top sixth man with the positional versatility that creates hard-to-combat matchups.

Yet, as the Warriors notched their 50th win of the season, 119-108, in a collaborative effort against the Sixers, they gave credit to the potential they see in their opponent, even when Brett Brown didn't have his key pieces on the court Monday (see Instant Replay).

"They play hard," Stephen Curry said. "They have some talent to work around. Hopefully they have some consistency with their roster going forward and getting guys healthy. One thing about them, you've got to compliment their energy and effort and fight every night they play."

Facing the Warriors with a full squad is challenging enough. The Sixers did it shorthanded without Joel Embiid, who is out indefinitely with a left knee contusion (see story). They also are less than a week removed from trading starting power forward Ersan Ilyasova and the defensive-minded Nerlens Noel.

"You've got to give this team a lot of credit," Draymond Green said. "They're going to be really, really, really good. I mean, they're missing Embiid and Ben Simmons and they're really on their way."

With 10 available players, including Justin Anderson, who has had just one shootaround to actually get a run in with the team, the Sixers fought until the final buzzer sounded. Dario Saric led the Sixers with 21 points and seven assists, while also collecting seven rebounds. Gerald Henderson scored 16 and both Robert Covington and Richaun Holmes added 15 (see feature highlight). Covington also grabbed a team-high eight rebounds.

"They play the right way," Klay Thompson said. "They made it tough on us tonight. I'm excited to see their team when Embiid and Simmons are healthy. It should be a scary frontcourt, and with Saric. They're heading in the right direction. They'll only get better this June because they have some high picks. It's a bright future in Philly."

The Sixers held the Warriors to 6 for 29 three-point shooting (20.7 percent), including an 0-for-11 outing by Curry. This was the third time this season and only the 37th time in his career Curry missed all of his three-point attempts.

"I think he had an off night," Brown said. "I think at times we got lucky with them as a team. They didn't shoot it the way the team normally would shoot it. Some of it is I give our guys credit."

Curry took his uncharacteristic performance, which included a pair of air-balls, in stride.

"The weatherman said it was a low-pressure system that was coming and I forgot to adjust," Curry said. "One thing, [I] don't ever get down on myself. Obviously that's why I got 11 of them up and not make one. You still have confidence the next one's going in."

Still, the Warriors turned to team basketball to pull away with the win. While they struggled from long range, they found other ways to run up the scoreboard, including shooting 33 for 39 at the free throw line.

Kevin Durant led all players with 27 points to go with eight rebounds. Green recorded a 14-point, 11-assist double-double and six boards. Thompson scored 21 points and Zaza Pachulia added 16. And at the end of the night, Curry still finished with 19 points in spite of his three-point woes.

"We've been doing this for a while together now and just try to find ways to get it done," Green said. "Obviously you've got to do a lot more on the defensive end to get stops, and try to create more offense. I think it was a good effort from everybody tonight to chip in."

Added Curry: "For us to still have the moxie to withstand that and still pretty much have the lead the whole game and allow our defense to get us a win tonight was kind of our M.O."

The Warriors are a perennial title contender thanks to their balanced roster and depth of weapons. The Sixers are in the beginning stages of working toward that goal. After Monday's game, the NBA's strongest example of "team" appreciated the direction in which Sixers are moving.

"Putting this franchise back together," Green said, "it's amazing to see."

Best of NHL: Ryan White scores in winning debut with Wild

Best of NHL: Ryan White scores in winning debut with Wild

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Mikael Granlund beat two defenders to find open ice and wrap the winning shot around goalie Jonathan Quick just 12 seconds into overtime, giving the Minnesota Wild a 5-4 victory over the Los Angeles Kings on Monday night.

Granlund's 20th goal of the season gave goalie Devan Dubnyk his NHL-leading 33rd win and the Wild their 15th comeback victory. They answered all four goals in regulation by the Kings, from Nick Shore, Tanner Pearson, Jake Muzzin and Marian Gaborik.

Jason Zucker's spinning wrist shot midway through the third period tied the game for the Wild, who also had goals from Nino Niederreiter, Jordan Schroeder and Ryan White in his debut. White and Martin Hanzal were acquired in a trade with Arizona the night before (see full recap).

Kucherov's hat trick carries Lightning past Sens
TAMPA, Fla. -- Nikita Kucherov scored three power-play goals in the second period and the Tampa Bay Lightning kept their fading playoff hopes alive with a 5-1 victory over the Ottawa Senators on Monday night.

Kucherov had the second hat trick of his career and added an assist in the third period. Jonathan Drouin assisted all three of his goals and Victor Hedman assisted on two.

A day after trading goaltender Ben Bishop to Los Angeles and just hours after trading forward Brian Boyle to Toronto, the Lightning improved to 6-1-2 over their past nine games.

The Senators, who won at Florida on Sunday night, are 6-6 over their past 12 games (see full recap).

Galchenyuk lifts Canadiens over Devils in OT
NEWARK, N.J. -- Alex Galchenyuk scored on a power play at 2:54 of overtime and the Montreal Canadiens rallied from a two-goal third-period deficit to beat the New Jersey Devils 4-3 on Monday night.

Max Pacioretty scored twice in the final 11:23 of regulation to tie the game and Alexander Radulov added a goal for the Canadiens, who won consecutive games for the first time since early January. Al Montoya had 34 saves for Montreal.

Kyle Palmieri, John Moore and Travis Zajac scored for the Devils, who have lost four straight games (0-2-2), the past two in overtime. Cory Schneider made 29 saves.

Galchenyuk beat Schneider with a shot from between the circles less than a minute after Damon Severson was penalized for hooking (see full recap).