Sixers roll be­hind Em­biid

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - SPORTS - By Dave Zeitlin The As­so­ci­ated Press

Joel Em­biid scored a ca­reer­high 26 points in 20 min­utes, and the Philadel­phia 76ers routed the Phoenix Suns 120105 on Satur­day night for their most con­vinc­ing win of the sea­son.

Joel Em­biid scored a ca­reer-high 26 points in 20 min­utes, and the Philadel­phia 76ers routed the Phoenix Suns 120-105 on Satur­day night for their most con­vinc­ing win of the sea­son.

Nik Stauskas added a sea­son-high 21 points on 8-for-9 shoot­ing for the Sixers, who have split their last six games af­ter start­ing the sea­son with seven straight losses. Ser­gio Ro­driguez had eight points, 11 as­sists and eight re­bounds.

Eric Bled­soe led Phoenix (4-10) with 27 points. The Suns have lost three of their first four on their cur­rent six-game road trip.

Em­biid was 3 for 5 from 3-point range and 9 for 14 from the field over­all. He also grabbed seven re­bounds and blocked two shots, in­clud­ing a fe­ro­cious one on Devin Booker in the sec­ond quar­ter that got the crowd roar­ing.

The 7-foot-2 cen­ter, play­ing in just his ninth NBA game af­ter a pair of foot surg­eries side­lined him for his first two sea­sons, reached his ca­reer high on a jumper with 8:30 left.

Af­ter a 3-point play from Bled­soe got Phoenix within six mid­way through the third quar­ter, the Sixers reeled off a 10-0 run to open an 82-66 lead. They led by dou­ble fig­ures the rest of the way against a banged-up Phoenix team play­ing the sec­ond end of a back-to-back.

Em­biid and Booker were game-time de­ci­sions due to sprained an­kles. Each of them started and Em­biid jumped all over the Suns, scor­ing Philly’s first eight points and 10 in the first three min­utes, in­clud­ing a pair of 3-point­ers.

Later in the first quar­ter, Em­biid had eight points in a 10-0 run that helped Philadel­phia to a 31-17 ad­van­tage. The Sixers threat­ened to pull away in the sec­ond, but Bled­soe scored 15 in the quar­ter to help the Suns close to 58-48 at half­time.

Booker fin­ished with 10 points on 4-for-13 shoot­ing. Alan Wil­liams and Bran­don Knight added 12 points apiece for the Suns.

Hol­lis Thomp­son (14 points), Er­san Ilyasova (11 points), Ger­ald Hen­der­son (11 points) and Dario Saric (10 points) all hit dou­ble fig­ures for Philadel­phia.

Tip-Ins

Suns: The Suns were with­out T.J. War­ren (ill­ness) and Tyson Chan­dler (mother’s fu­neral) . ... Phoenix re­called rookie for­ward Der­rick Jones Jr. from D-League af­fil­i­ate North­ern Ari­zona be­fore the game.

76ers: Af­ter shoot­ing 1 for 5 from the field, slump­ing sharp­shooter Robert Cov­ing­ton has missed 27 of his last 31 shots, lead­ing to plenty of boos from the crowd . ... Coach Brett Brown said he had a pos­i­tive meet­ing with Ner­lens Noel, who has been out all sea­son with a knee in­jury, but didn’t of­fer a timetable for his re­turn. ... The Sixers have won three straight at home, but dropped their last 21 on the road — two away from match­ing a fran­chise record.

The Em­biid Process

Em­biid, who al­ready has missed four games this sea­son as the Sixers slowly ease him back, was lim­ited to 24 min­utes or less. Jahlil Okafor, who pla­toons with him at cen­ter, was un­der the same min­utes re­stric­tion be­cause of knee surgery last sea­son.

Up Next

Suns: Visit Wash­ing­ton on Mon­day.

76ers: Host Mi­ami on Mon­day night. The Heat have won five straight against Philadel­phia.

MATT SLOCUM — THE AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS

Dario Saric goes up for a dunk dur­ing the sec­ond half of the Sixers’ 120-105 vic­tory over the Phoenix Suns on Satur­day.

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