Joel Embiid had 33 points to extend his franchise-record run of 30 or more to 20 games and the Philadelphia 76ers beat the Charlotte Hornets 97-89 on Saturday night for their fifth straight victory.
The reigning NBA MVP Embiid also had 10 rebounds. He was 11 of 23 from the field and made 11 of 12 free throws.
Tobias Harris added 21 points and Tyrese Maxey had 16 points and eight assists to help Philadelphia improve to 28-13. The 76ers — coming off a victory Friday night at Orlando — trailed by four entering the fourth quarter, then held the Hornets to 16 points in the final period.
Miles Bridges had 25 points and 11 rebounds for Charlotte. No. 2 overall pick Brandon Miller added 23. The Hornets are 9-31.
Embiid proved to be too much for a Charlotte team playing without top centers in Mark Williams and Nick Richards. Charlotte was forced to defend Embiid with P.J. Washington, who fouled out, and Nathan Mensah, creating a big size mismatch for the 76ers’ 7-foot, 280-pound center.
“We knew they were down guys and had a smaller team tonight, so we had to exploit those type of mismatches out there,” Harris said.
The Hornets were forced to double team Embiid most of the game.
“We just had to make the right play,” Harris said. “It was a pretty simple game plan for us. I thought in the fourth quarter we did a great job of executing it.”