By Tristan Deschenes, 98.5 The Sports Hub contributor
In their second meeting of the season and first since opening night, Joel Embiid scored 38 points and the Philadelphia 76ers defeated the Boston Celtics, 115-109.
With 4:04 to go in the fourth quarter, Embiid knocked down a big three to give the 76ers a 100-92 lead, and though it felt like Philadelphia had taken the momentum. Jayson Tatum responded with a three to give the C’s life and make it a five-point game.
The 76ers got the lead up to 106-97 with 2:23 to go after a Josh Richardson two-point shot, but Boston would respond with a 7-0 run of their own to bring themselves within two points with 1:02 to go.
But Boston center Enes Kanter then committed a costly off-ball foul on Richardson that allowed Richardson to get to the free throw line, where he knocked down both free throws to make it a two-possession game at 108-104.
Boston did get it back to a one point game after Kemba Walker found Tatum for a three at the top of the key to make the score 110-109 with 26.5 seconds to go.
After Embiid knocked down two free throws to make the score 112-109, the Celtics gave up possession on the inbounds pass after Jaylen Brown was taken down by Richardson and the ball bounced out of bounds.
Embiid put the game away with free throws to make it 115-109, Philadelphia.
Embiid was a problem all night for the Celtics, dominating in the paint and grabbing 13 rebounds to go with the aforementioned 38 points. The 76ers also got contributions from Tobias Harris (23 points) and Mike Scott’s 15 points on five threes. Ben Simmons was almost nonexistent outside of some free throw makes, scoring only seven points.
Despite Embiid’s great night, the Celtics bigs held their own on the offensive end; Daniel Theis and Kanter combined to score 36 points, as Theis finished the night with 16 points and five rebounds to go with Kanter’s 20 points off the bench.
Walker led the way scoring for Boston with 29 points, and with 21 of those points coming in the first half. Gordon Hayward, meanwhile, chipped in with 19 points while Jayson Tatum added 15.
The loss marked the Celtics’ first home loss of the season, while the win was Philadelphia’s third straight win against the Celtics dating back to last year, and they have now won eight of their last nine games.
Philadelphia also jumped the Celtics in the conference standings and now sit at third in the East.
Up Next: The Celtics will travel to Dallas to take on Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday Night.