Foles’ run in Philly may be near end
Beal scores 14 straight points, finishes with 34
Wizards 123 76ers 106
— After rising off the floor midway through the fourth quarter, Bradley Beal flashed a thankful smile.
Washington’s leading scorer had survived the full force of Joel Embiid.
Beal drew the charge from Philadelphia’s brawny center, then went on to score 14 consecutive points and finish with 34, helping the Wizards beat the 76ers 123-106 on Wednesday night for a split of the home-and-home set.
“I don’t mind taking charges — I’m a physical player,” Beal said. “But with Jojo, it’s a little different story. He’s a big fella. I’m glad I got a lift in yesterday.”
Otto Porter Jr. added 23 points, his most since returning from a quadriceps injury this month, and Trevor Ariza had 17 to help Washington improve to 4-3 since losing All-Star guard John Wall for the season.
Embiid had 35 points and 14 rebounds for the 76ers. They committed 23 turnovers, and had a four-game winning streak end.
Jimmy Butler added 23 points, and Ben Simmons had 15 points and 10 rebounds for Philadelphia. A night after hitting more than half of their 31 attempts from beyond the arc, the 76ers shot 8 of 27 from 3-point range, going 3 of 20 in the first three quarters.
“The combination of not being able to make some
shots, the turnovers creating a lot of their offensive looks was too hard to overcome,” 76ers coach Brett Brown said.
Philadelphia cut what had been a 26-point deficit in the third quarter down to 12 in the fourth on the possession that followed Embiid’s charge.
Beal answered by individually outscoring the visitors 14-5 to make it 116-95 with 4:22 left. He shot 6 of 11 from 3-point range and 13 of 21 overall from the field. Not to mention a gutsy defensive play.
“He’s willing to do whatever it takes to win,” Ariza said. “We all see that in him.”
NOT OTTO SHAPE
Porter continued in his current role off the bench, but played 33 minutes in his fifth game since returning from his 10-game injury layoff. That was his most action since Dec. 5, though he insisted his return is still a work in progress.
“There is nothing easy about getting back,” he said. “Just getting back in game shape, that is the biggest (thing), getting my second wind.”
TAKE IT BACK!
Philadelphia has lost six of its eight games in the second game of back-to-back sets. Against Washington, however, Simmons didn’t believe the timing of the game mattered.
“I think that was just lack of competitiveness,” Simmons said. “I don’t think we competed.”
A sizable contingent of 76ers fans made their presence known. That included booing the Wizards’ player introductions and chanting “E-A-G-L-E-S! EAGLES!”
Washington picked up two technical fouls during a 32-second stretch early in the third. Thomas Bryant received his for hanging on the rim too long following a dunk, and Jeff Green got the second for arguing. Brown also picked up a tech for arguing a call in the second quarter.
76ers: J.J. Redick (back) sat out a second consecutive game, but Brown doesn’t expect his absence to last long. “We’re in sort of hyper-sensitive mode with J.J,” Brown said about his most productive 3-point shooter. “He’s that important.”
Wizards: Led 25-20 after the first quarter despite committing seven turnovers . ... Porter Jr. played with a sore right hand after injuring it Tuesday night in Philadelphia.
76ers: Host Atlanta on Friday night.
Wizards: Host Milwaukee on Friday night.
Bucks 116, Rockets 109
HOUSTON (AP) — Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 27 points and grabbed a season-high 21 rebounds to help Milwaukee withstand a 42-point performance from James Harden and get a win over Houston.
In a matchup of the two early front-runners for MVP, Harden and his teammates were done in by a shooting slump late in the third quarter that spilled into the fourth and left them down by 15 points.
Milwaukee held a 13-point lead with about five minutes left before Houston used a 8-0 run, started by two 3-pointers from Harden, to cut the lead to 107-102. The Bucks got a layup from Eric Bledsoe before Harden scored the next four points to get Houston within 109106 with 2 1/2 minutes left.
Antetokounmpo made one of two free throws to push Milwaukee’s lead to four points with about 90 seconds left. Harden missed his third straight 3-pointer before Antetokounmpo added a layup on the other end to make it 112-106 with 40 seconds remaining.
Harden missed another 3 seconds later and the Bucks added four free throws down the stretch to secure the their seventh victory in eight games.
It was Harden’s sixth 40-point outing in the last eight games and he has scored 30 or more points in 14 straight games, which is the longest streak since Tracy McGrady did it in 2003. He shot 6 of 16 on 3-pointers to give him at least five in the last 11 games.
Houston center Clint Capela struggled, making just 4 of 16 shots a game after scoring a career-high 31 points in a win over the Nuggets on Monday. He finished with 18 points and 13 rebounds.
The Bucks scored the first six points of the fourth quarter to stretch a run they started in the third quarter to 15-0 and make it 98-83 with about 10 minutes left.
The Rockets got their first field goal since the 4:32 mark of the third quarter when P.J. Tucker made a 3-pointer a few seconds after that.
A weird play came after that when Antetokounmpo threw a pass across the lane and it bounced off Harden’s face and back at Antetokounmpo, which dished it to Ersan Ilyasova for a 3. Harden fell slowly to the court after he was hit but got up quickly and seemed to be OK.