Playing without Ben Simmons (illness) for the second straight game, the 76ers rode the first 50-point game of Joel Embiid’s career to beat the Chicago Bulls, 112-105 at the Wells Fargo Center. Here are three reasons why the Sixers won.
Does any more needed to be said? Embiid couldn’t be stopped and he scored in a variety of ways. He was especially dominant inside as we see on this play.
On that play, the Bulls tried to double him, but Embiid was too quick. Garrett Temple (No. 17) got over too late and Embiid made the turnaround jumper and was fouled by Wendell Carter Jr.
Embiid’s most spectacular play came on this length of the court drive, which he finished with a Euro step and drew the foul.
In looking at his 17 baskets, Embiid made six face-up jumpers ranging from 12 to 21 feet. He also hit two turnaround fallaway jumpers of 12 and 15 feet, with the rest of his field goals near the basket.
When he wasn’t scoring, Embiid was drawing fouls, hitting 15 of 17 free throws.
It’s not just the scoring, but he also had 17 rebounds, five assists and four blocked shots, including two late-game blocks on Zach LaVine on drives to the basket.
Embiid and Tobias Harris both finished with a game-high plus-22 rating.
This is a recording from the previous game.
It’s hard to say that the Sixers did a good defensive job on a player who scored 30 points, but that is what happened. Zack LaVine, who made many spectacular players in scoring 30 points, had a difficult shooting night. With Matisse Thybulle as the primary defender, LaVine shot just 9 for 28. According to NBA.com matchup stats, LaVine shot 2 for 12, including 2 of 7 from three-point range with Thybulle as the primary defender.
And the final three-pointer that LaVine made, a step-back shot, Thybulle had tight defense, but it was simply a great shot. When LaVine would get by Thybulle, he would often funnel him to the Sixers big men.
Thybulle played a season-high 36 minutes and 39 seconds. He had three blocked shots, one steal and earned a plus-16 rating.
In looking at LaVine’s 10 three-point attempts, Thybulle was the primary defender on nine of them. LaVine was 2 for 9 on those shots.
Sixers three-point defense
The Bulls shot just 7 of 32 from three-point range (21.9%). Some of the shots were open, but the Sixers contested many of them, using their length to disrupt the Bulls shooters.
This was a night the Sixers had to defend the three-pointer well because they didn’t shoot well from three either, 7 for 21 (33.3%).