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Joel Embiid, 76ers nip Lakers on milestone night for LeBron James

Jan 15, 2023; Los Angeles, California, USA; Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (21) moves the ball against Los Angeles Lakers forward Wenyen Gabriel (35) during the first half at Crypto.com Arena. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Joel Embiid scored 35 points with 11 rebounds, James Harden added 24 points with 13 assists and the Philadelphia 76ers made it consecutive wins to open a five-game road trip by earning a 113-112 victory Sunday over the Los Angeles Lakers.

Tyrese Maxey scored 16 points as the 76ers defeated the Utah Jazz and Lakers on consecutive nights. The Sixers won for the seventh time in their past nine games.

LeBron James scored 35 points with 10 assists for the Lakers, while reaching the 38,000-point mark for his career on a first-quarter basket. James is one of just two players to reach the scoring plateau as he closes in on Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s NBA record 38,387 points.

Russell Westbrook scored 20 points with 14 rebounds and 11 assists for the Lakers in his fourth triple-double of the season.

Los Angeles lost its third consecutive game but has been far more competitive while going 5-3 since Dec. 30. James has played six of those eight games and has scored at least 30 points in four of them.

James looked determined early, scoring 16 points in the first quarter and reaching 38,001 points on a jumper from the top of the key with 5:43 remaining in the opening period. But the 76ers led 33-32 after one quarter as Embiid scored 14.

In a tight game throughout, the Lakers led 58-57 at halftime before the 76ers went ahead 86-83 through three quarters.

The Lakers’ Dennis Schroder made a driving layup for a 109-108 lead with 1:42 remaining, before Georges Niang’s 3-pointer with 1:27 on the clock put the Sixers up 111-109. A Lakers turnover led to Embiid’s basket from just inside the free-throw line for a 113-109 Philadelphia advantage.

Los Angeles pulled within a point on a 3-pointer from Troy Brown Jr. with 37 seconds left and got the ball back after an Embiid miss. But they were unable to win in the closing seconds as Westbrook lost the handle on a go-ahead layup bid at the buzzer.

Tobias Harris scored 15 points for the Sixers. Wenyen Gabriel scored 14 points for the Lakers, while Brown added 13 and Thomas Bryant had 10.

–Field Level Media