Sixers edge Knicks
Embiid, Simmons lift Philadelphia to victory
NEW YORK — Ben Simmons backed up his tough talk with a big day.
Simmons had 20 points, 22 rebounds and nine assists, and the Philadelphia 76ers beat the New York Knicks 108- 105 on Sunday.
Joel Embiid scored 26 points for the Sixers, who were coming off a 123- 121 home loss against Atlanta on Friday night. JJ Redick added 22 points, and Jimmy Butler finished with 16.
Simmons called his team “too soft” after the loss to the lowly Hawks. He answered his own challenge with a pair of big plays late in the fourth quarter against New York.
The Knicks pulled within two on rookie Kevin Knox’s 3- pointer with 3: 02 left, but Simmons pulled down an offensive rebound and fed Redick for a key jumper.
A defensive rebound for Simmons set up Redick’s two foul shots with 20 seconds left, lifting Philadelphia to a 106- 98 lead.
“I thought especially the offen- sive rebound at the end of the game that led to JJ’s 3, I thought that was the game,” Sixers coach Brett Brown said. “They made it close at the end, but I thought his overall performance was dominant.”
New York’s Emmanuel Mudiay missed a potential game- tying 3- pointer at the buzzer.
Knox had career- high 31 points for the Knicks, who have lost four straight and 19- of- 22. Luke Kornet had a career- best 23 points.
At 19 years, 155 days, Knox became the sixth- youngest player in NBA history to score 30 points in a game, joining Kobe Bryant, Devin Booker, Jaren Jackson Jr., Kevin Durant and LeBron James.
“Those are some legendary players,” Knox said. “There’s a lot of other players on that list, but it just shows the work ( I’m) putting in is paying off. Those are some great guys ( to share) company with.”
New York trailed by as many as 24 points in the second quarter, but closed to 83- 82 on Kornet’s basket with 11 seconds left in the third.
The 76ers responded in the fourth, beginning the quarter with an 11- 0 run. Simmons capped the spurt by finding a driving Butler for a layup that made it 94- 82 with 6: 22 left.
“We have to lock down on defense and offensively take care of the ball,” Simmons said. “I think that’s really it. Everybody needs to be locked in.”
Five of the Sixers’ next six games are against teams competing for a playoff spot. They host Minnesota on Tuesday night, and then visit Indiana on Thursday. They play Oklahoma City, Houston and San Antonio during a t hree- g ame homestand beginning Saturday against the Thunder.
“I’m excited,” Embiid said. “We’re going to see how good we are and how good we can become or how bad we are. The next three weeks are going to shape our season.”
Bucks 133, Hawks 114
ATLANTA — Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 33 points, Eric Bledsoe added 24 points and 10 assists, and the Milwaukee Bucks beat the Hawks in Mike Budenholzer’s return to Atlanta.
Khris Middleton finished with 17 points and 11 rebounds to help the Bucks improve to 30- 12, second- best in the NBA.
Raptors 140 Wizards 138
WASHINGTON — Serge Ibaka hit a 3- pointer with 15 seconds left in the second overtime, and the Toronto Raptors survived to earn their fifth straight win, defeating the Washington Wizards.
Kawhi Leonard had 41 points and 11 rebounds to pace Toronto, which led 51- 28 with four minutes to play in the second quarter and 96- 79 with 57 seconds to play in the third.
Bradley Beal had his second triple- double of the season, collecting season highs of 43 points and 15 assists along with 10 rebounds.
Warriors 119 Mavericks 114
DALLAS — Stephen Curry scored 48 points, making 11 3- pointers, and the Golden State Warriors held off the Dallas Mavericks.
Kevin Durant added 28 points and Klay Thompson had nine of his 16 in the fourth quarter.
Curry’s 11th 3- pointer — tying a season high — gave the Warriors a 117- 114 lead.
Magic 116 Rockets 109
ORLANDO, Fla. — Nikola Vucevic and Aaron Gordon each scored 22 points and Orlando took advantage of James Harden’s awful 3- point shooting to beat Houston.
Harden scored 38 points to push his run of 30- point games to 16, but was 1- of- 17 from 3- point range and 11- of32 overall from the field. He made 15- of- 16 free throws and had 12 assists and nine rebounds.
Evan Fournier and Terrence Ross each had 17 points for Orlando. The Magic were coming off a 105- 103 home victory over Boston on Saturday night.
The Philadelphia 76ers’ Ben Simmons reacts after dunking during Sunday’s game against the New York Knicks. Simmons had 20 points and 22 rebounds in the Sixers’ 108- 105 victory.