Joel Embiid and Tobias Harris dominate shorthanded Pelicans, win 117-107
In classic Philadelphia 76ers, last night’s game against the New Orleans Pelicans was much closer than it should have been, with the Sixers pulling away in the fourth quarter to win 117-107.
Tobias Harris and Joel Embiid combined for 75 of the Sixers’ 117 points on the night. The Pelicans were without the majority of their rotation and the Sixers got off to yet another slow start to keep this a game until the fourth quarter, but in the end, another dominant performance from Joel Embiid aided by Tobias Harris, gave the 76ers a win.
It seems like every night, Joel Embiid finding his way into the record book. Last night was no different, as Embiid became the first 76ers player since Wilt Chamberlain to record 35+ points and 10+ rebounds in four straight games.
Embiid also became the first player in franchise history to score 30+ in 14 of 15 games. He also became the first 76ers player since Allen Iverson to score 25+ points in 15 straight games.
If you ever want to just stop and take in everything that Joel Embiid is accomplishing, just head over to the Sixers Stats Twitter account. It’s amazing looking at all of the information and retweets of any NBA media outlet rip off stat after stat about how amazing Embiid has been over the last month.
To recap, we’ll just focus on the last four games.
- 42 points, 14 rebounds
- 38 points, 12 rebounds
- 40 points, 13 rebounds
- 50 points, 12 rebounds
Embiid finished with 42 points and 14 rebounds in 33 minutes of play, also blocking four shots on the night. A pretty good response to a Player of the Week snub is to start the following week even better than the last.
A lot of people will look at the free throw numbers and get the wrong impression, he struggled from the field early but once he turned it on in the second half, the Pelicans had zero chance in stopping him. They resorted to fouling him constantly, resulting in Embiid going 18/20 from the line.
What makes Embiid so great in games like this, is that his jumper wasn’t falling early, so he played bully ball and the New Orleans backcourt couldn’t physically keep up with him. Embiid can beat you in so many ways, and last night was just another example of pure dominance.
For the first time since November, Tobias harris scored 30 or more points, and it was the first time in a long time that I remember him really getting hot. Harris’ 33 points in this game is the most any 76er has had in any of Embiid’s 40 point games.
It looked natural for Harris in this one, he knocked down all three of his shots from deep and only missed six total shots. He finished with 33 points, 11 rebounds, and 2 assists while also grabbing a steal and blocking two shots.
Recently Philadelphia has struggled on the boards, and Harris grabbed 11 rebounds in an effort to remedy those issues. Although Harris has struggled throughout the season, last night he was quick to react the second the ball touched his hands. Harris was decisive and found open lanes at will.
With Harris and Embiid taking over the majority of the offense, Korkmaz (13) and Tyrese Maxey (10) were the only two other 76ers players to score in double figures. The bench combined for a total of 16 points.
Korkmaz struggled shooting last night which unfortunately renders him essentially useless, he shot 3-for-10 from the field and 2-for-7 from three. It seemed like he was getting out of his slump against San Antonio, but to say the least, this was certainly a step in the wrong direction.
Maxey had good moments tonight including a few blow-by layups and more importantly, a three ball that ended up being the final nail in the coffin for the Pelicans. This game wasn’t up to his recent standards but it he still played well.
As for the bench, Philadelphia only went nine players deep on the bench. Isaiah Joe and Georges Niang each had six points, Andre Drummond had four and Charlie Brown did not score. The Sixers could’ve really used another contributor in this game, unfortunately did not happen but we’ll happily take an Embiid and Harris game and keep it moving.
Rounding out the top six in the Eastern Conference standings, the 76ers are now 28-19. The East is crowded, with all top six seeds separated by just two games.
Philadelphia hosts the Los Angeles Lakers in the upcoming phase of their home stand looking to grab their third straight victory. Hopefully they find us in better health, potentially gaining Seth Curry and Danny Green back from injury.
Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY