Nikola Jokic had 22 points, 13 rebounds and eight assists, while Bones Hyland scored 21 points. as the visiting Denver Nuggets defeated the Philadelphia 76ers 114-110 on Monday.
Will Barton added 20 points, Monte Morris contributed 11 and JaMychal Green had 10 for the Nuggets, who rallied from a 19-point second-quarter deficit.
Joel Embiid led the Sixers with 34 points and nine rebounds, while James Harden added 24 points, 11 assists and nine rebounds. Tyrese Maxey scored 19 points for Philadelphia, Tobias Harris had 10 and Matisse Thybulle recorded six steals with two blocked shots.
Georges Niang dropped in a 3-pointer with 3:56 left in the second quarter and the Sixers led 54-35. Jokic converted a three-point play with 1:56 remaining as Denver closed within 58-46.
The Nuggets closed the first half on a surge, using a 10-0 spurt to trail 58-53 at halftime. Barton led the Nuggets with 14 points before the break. Embiid paced the Sixers in the first half with 16 points on 5-of-7 shooting.
When Jokic scored in the low post with 9:33 to go in the third quarter, the game was tied 61-all. On Denver’s next possession, Jokic fired a long pass to Jeff Green, who threw down a dunk for a two-point advantage.
The Sixers went ahead 70-66 after Embiid hit four straight free throws. Following an empty Nuggets possession, Embiid made a 15-foot jumper and the Sixers led 72-66 with 6:04 remaining in the third quarter, before leading 88-81 at the end of the period.
Denver’s DeMarcus Cousins hit a 3-pointer from the wing to tie the game at 89-all with 9:34 remaining. Hyland drained three consecutive 3-pointers for the Nuggets, who pulled ahead 103-97 with 6:08 left.
The game became chippy with Harden and Cousins each picking up a technical foul with 7:04 remaining. After six consecutive points, the Sixers tied the score 103-all with 4:42 remaining.
Embiid went crashing to the floor after a hard foul by JaMychal Green with 3:13 left. After a video review, Green was called for a flagrant-1 foul.
When Harden hit two free throws with 2:15 left, the Sixers led 108-107.
Hyland responded with a 3-pointer and Jokic hit a difficult shot from the corner for a 112-108 lead with 1:32 remaining.
–Field Level Media