The 76ers (3-4) next play Monday night at the Washington Wizards (3-3), an opportunity to finish their four-game road trip with three straight wins.
On Saturday, the Sixers held off the Chicago Bulls for a 114-109 victory after defeating the Raptors the previous night in Toronto. Tied with the Bulls at 109, Joel Embiid’s 3-pointer with 18.1 seconds left in regulation proved to be the game-winner for the visiting Sixers.
Embiid led all scorers with 25 points.
“Really, it starts defensively,” said Embiid. “If we’re connected and we’re able to get stops, our offense is going to be fine. That’s what we were able to do in the first quarter and the beginning of the second quarter. Just getting stops and getting out in transition.”
When it comes to transition and improving the team’s pace, veteran teammate Tobias Harris echoed Embiid’s message before explaining one of the group’s current objectives:
“Getting the ball over half-court before 20 seconds [left] on the shot clock. Just getting the ball up, kicking the ball ahead. We just have to keep embracing those types of things.”
The Sixers’ bench outscored the Bulls’ bench, 39-24, with Georges Niang and De’Anthony Melton both scoring in double figures.
“They’ve got to touch the ball to score,” Doc Rivers said postgame about the bench’s ball movement. “And now the ball is moving with that group and they’re starting to score.”
The Bulls had three 20-point scorers in defeat: DeMar DeRozan (24), Nikola Vučević (23), and Zach LaVine (20). Vučević also pulled down a game-high 19 rebounds.
Saturday’s Key Contributors
- Playing 32 minutes in his return to the lineup, Embiid registered a game-high 25 points (9-15 fg, 1-2 3fg, 6-9 ft) with seven rebounds, four assists, and a steal.
- Embiid missed the previous game due to right knee injury recovery.
- Niang posted a bench-high 15 points on 6-for-8 shooting from the field and 3-for-4 from beyond the arc in 18 minutes against the Bulls.
- In 36 minutes of action, Harden notched a double-double with 15 points and a game-high 11 assists, plus six rebounds and two steals.
- Harden was a perfect 11-for-11 from the foul line, marking the 37th time in his career that he’s made at least 10 free throws in a game without a miss.
- Maxey scored 11 of his 14 points in the third quarter. He added five rebounds, three assists, and one steal in 29 total minutes.
- Harris tallied 11 of his 13 points in the first half. He shot 4-for-6 from the field, 3-for-4 from 3-point range, and 2-for-2 from the free-throw line.
- The rest of Harris’ stat line over 31 minutes included five rebounds, three assists, one steal, and two blocked shots.
- In 22 minutes off the Sixers’ bench, Melton finished with 10 points (4-8 fg, 2-4 3fg), three rebounds, four assists, one steal, and one block.
- The first-year Sixer scored at least 10 points for the fourth consecutive game.
Monday’s Sixers-Wizards game in D.C. is a 7 p.m. ET start.
Quote to Note:
Tobias Harris, on playing alongside Tyrese Maxey, who dropped a career-high 44 points on Friday in Toronto:
“Tyrese is special. My wife says, ‘Protect Tyrese at all costs.’
“He has this glow about him on the court. Anytime I step on the court with him is an honor.”
Washington fell to the Boston Celtics, 112-94, on the road on Sunday night.
The Celtics made 21 threes (21-47, .447). The Wizards were led by Kristaps Porzingis, who posted a double-double with 17 points and 13 rebounds. Bradley Beal (22.6) and Kyle Kuzma (20.4) are both averaging more than 20 points per game.
Corey Kispert (left ankle sprain) has yet to make his season debut, while Delon Wright (right hamstring strain) has now missed the last two games.
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