Like in their other victories, the Sixers battled back from a double-digit deficit. This time, they trailed by 14 points after one quarter. But after clamping down on their perimeter defense, the Sixers turned that deficit into a commanding 19-point cushion with 7 minutes, 17 seconds remaining.
"They were very good," said Sixers coach Brett Brown, whose squad held Cleveland to 33 percent shooting over the final three quarters. The 76ers yielded just nine three-pointers after allowing 33 in their previous two games.
"They stayed together when we got down in that first period, to their credit, and they've showed signs of this, even when we've been losing and get dispirited," Brown added. "They do a good job of staying together. Our defense was pretty good in the final three quarters.
Sixers swingman Evan Turner finished with 22 points, 10 rebounds, and five assists. Reserve guard Tony Wroten added a career-high 18 points. Thaddeus Young (16 points), James Anderson (11), Michael Carter-Williams (11), and Spencer Hawes (10) were the Sixers' other double-digit scorers.
South Philly native Dion Waiters led the Cavaliers with 18 points.
But Bynum's return was the hot topic leading up to the game.
That's because there were huge expectations when he arrived in Philadelphia from the Los Angeles Lakers in a four-team trade in August 2012.
Some believed the 7-foot-1 center could lead the Sixers to the Eastern Conference finals. But his knee problems would not go away. He made $16.9 million last season and did not play a game.
Sixers fans questioned his dedication to getting onto the court last season.
As expected, there were chants of "Bynum sucks" and "Let's go bowling," a reference to the center's reinjuring his knee while bowling.
Bynum finished with four points on 2-for-3 shooting to go with five rebounds, one assist, one steal, and a blocked shot in 17:46 of action.
"It doesn't bother me," he said of the fans' chants. "It's kind of funny . . . I was cracking up. I don't know what more I can say."
Asked if he felt the reception was uncalled for, Bynum responded: "I felt it was kind of weak actually. I thought it was going to be much worse."
Sixers reserve center Daniel Orton sat out the game with a sore right knee but is expected to play Saturday.
Cavs rookie Anthony Bennett left in the first half with a sprained right shoulder and did not return.