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NBA roundup: Joel Embiid’s late surge leads Sixers past Celts

Sportsnaut
Dec 20, 2021; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (21) drives the ball against Boston Celtics center Enes Freedom (13) in the second quarter at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 20, 2021; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (21) drives the ball against Boston Celtics center Enes Freedom (13) in the second quarter at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

Joel Embiid scored nine straight points in the final 1:22 and finished with 41 points and 10 rebounds as the Philadelphia 76ers rallied past the host Boston Celtics for a 108-103 win on Monday night.

Seth Curry added 26 points and seven assists and Tobias Harris had 25 points with seven boards for the 76ers, who snapped their three-game skid.

Jaylen Brown had a team-high 30 points for Boston, which has lost five of its past seven games. Jayson Tatum totaled 17 points, nine boards and six assists, and Enes Freedom added 15 points and 11 rebounds for the Celtics.

Warriors 113, Kings 98

Stephen Curry saved 15 of his game-high 30 points for the fourth quarter and Draymond Green recorded 16 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists as short-handed Golden State outlasted even more short-handed Sacramento in San Francisco.

With Andrew Wiggins and Jordan Poole in health and safety protocols and the Warriors still without Klay Thompson and James Wiseman, Golden State used a 29-19 fourth quarter to pull out a win in a game they trailed late in the third period.

Tyrese Haliburton had a team-high 24 points for the Kings, who were without six players — including De’Aaron Fox and Davion Mitchell — for COVID reasons and Richaun Holmes due to an eye injury.

Jazz 112, Hornets 102

Rudy Gobert scored 23 points and grabbed 21 rebounds, Bojan Bogdanovic also scored 23 points and Donovan Mitchell dropped in 21 to help Utah fend off a furious rally by Charlotte for a tense victory in Salt Lake City.

The Jazz led by 17 points with about 8 1/2 minutes remaining — and by as many as 22 points in the second quarter — before the Hornets went on a tear and eventually took the lead with 3:30 left. Utah, however, closed out strong to avoid a third home loss in four nights.

Terry Rozier sparked the Hornets’ comeback, scoring 14 of his 20 points in the final 8:10. Charlotte’s LaMelo Ball and Miles Bridges each scored 21 points, with Bridges pulling down 11 rebounds and Ball dishing out 11 assists.

Bulls 133, Rockets 118

DeMar DeRozan scored a game-high 26 points and Coby White followed with 24 to lead six players in double figures as host Chicago cruised past Houston for its second victory in as many nights.

Severely short-handed amid a team-wide COVID-19 outbreak, the Bulls lost another player when Alex Caruso left the game in the first half with a sprained left foot. Lonzo Ball contributed 19 points for Chicago, which benefited from a season-high 66 bench points.

Christian Wood posted 23 points and 11 rebounds to lead Houston, giving him six games with at least 20 points and 10 boards in the past 11 contests.

Spurs 116, Clippers 92

Dejounte Murray compiled 24 points, 12 rebounds and 13 assists as visiting San Antonio spoiled the return of Los Angeles’ Paul George from an elbow sprain.

Jakob Poeltl scored 17 points and grabbed 11 rebounds for the Spurs, and Keldon Johnson finished with 12 points and 12 rebounds. Murray had his third triple-double in five games.

George scored 25 points on 8-of-18 shooting after missing the previous five contests. Ivica Zubac scored 12 points and pulled down 12 rebounds for the Clippers.

Thunder 102, Grizzlies 99

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander scored 23 points to fuel visiting Oklahoma City to a win over Memphis.

Rookie Josh Giddey collected a career-high-tying 19 points and a career-best 11 assists and Kenrich Williams added 13 points off the bench for the Thunder, who avenged a 152-79 shellacking in Memphis on Dec. 2. The 73-point margin in the earlier contest was the largest in NBA history.

Memphis’ Desmond Bane drained five 3-pointers and finished with 25 points. Dillon Brooks scored 19 points, and Ja Morant had 16 points and eight assists in his return from a 12-game absence caused by a left knee injury.

–Field Level Media