Joel Embiid, the NBA’s scoring leader, led the Philadelphia 76ers (11-5) to victory, just missing a triple-double with 35 points, 11 rebounds, and nine assists, as they ended the Oklahoma City Thunder’s (11-5) impressive six-game winning streak with a 127-123 triumph on Saturday.
Embiid’s stellar performance included making 19 of 21 free throws, crucially sinking six in the final 9.8 seconds to secure the win, despite the Thunder narrowing the gap to two points in the last minute.
Teammate Tyrese Maxey contributed significantly with 28 points and eight rebounds, while Tobias Harris added 16 points.
Rookie Chet Holmgren led the Thunder with an impressive 33 points, while Shai Gilgeous-Alexander contributed 31.
Despite a late-game scare where Embiid appeared to injure his left ankle, he stayed in the game.
Embiid’s absence in the previous game due to left hip soreness did not hinder his impactful return, reaffirming his importance to the team.
Meanwhile, Thunder guard Josh Giddey faced off-court scrutiny amid an NBA investigation into allegations of an improper relationship with an underage girl, receiving mixed reactions from the home crowd.