NBA: Joel Embiid scores 38 in just three quarters as 76ers destroy Hornets
Joel Embiid poured in 38 points and rested in the fourth quarter as the visiting Philadelphia 76ers won their seventh game in a row by blowing out the Charlotte Hornets 121-82 in the NBA on Friday night.
Embiid shot 16-for-21 from the field and delivered five assists. He had compiled all of his 38 points with more than two minutes remaining in the third quarter.
“Home or road, it doesn’t matter,” Embiid said afterward. “We know what it takes offensively and defensively, everybody doing their job… tonight we did it as a team.”
Tobias Harris supplied 18 points, Tyrese Maxey had 13 points, Shake Milton notched 12 points and James Harden added 11 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists for a triple-double for the 76ers (47-22).
Charlotte scored only 15 points in the fourth quarter against Philadelphia backups.
Terry Rozier’s 14 points, P.J. Washington’s 12 points and Kelly Oubre Jr.’s 11 points led Charlotte. The Hornets (22-50) — who lost their fourth game in a row and are in danger of going winless on a five-game homestand that wraps up Monday night — also got 10 points from reserve Kai Jones.
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The Hornets, playing again without injured center Mark Williams, had no answer for Embiid. The 76ers’ big man had 53 points against Charlotte in a December meeting.
Philadelphia was dominant in the lane, holding a 62-35 rebounding advantage.
“It’s just good to get the game over with and be healthy,” said Rivers, who also took satisfaction from the Sixers’ ruthless performance.
“It just shows that we are focused, and we are showing up and playing,” Rivers said.
“There is no guarantee each night how you’re going to play, but there is a guarantee how you can show up — and we’re showing up every night.”
Embiid had 13 rebounds and Paul Reed added 10 off the bench.
There were other problems for the Hornets, who shot 5-for-35 on 3-pointers. Oubre, who often lights it up from long range, was 0-for-6 from deep, and Rozier went 2-for-11 on 3s.
The 76ers, who shot 50 percent from the field for the game, led 66-54 at halftime, and then scored the first 11 points of the second half. Philadelphia continued the trend by posting the first 13 points of the fourth quarter.
Philadelphia’s lead was just 31-29 through the first quarter and the Hornets went up 40-39 before the 76ers took control. Embiid had eight points in the last 3 1/2 minutes of the second quarter.