NBA regular season

Sixers stay hot, earn OT escape thriller over Raptors

Reuters
Sixers stay hot, earn OT escape thriller over Raptors

FREEFALL. Toronto Raptors forward Thaddeus Young (21) loses control of the ball while driving against Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (21) during the second quarter at Wells Fargo Center

Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports-Reuters

Joel Embiid and James Harden once again lead the Philadelphia 76ers in an overtime heist against the skidding Toronto Raptors

Joel Embiid had 28 points and 11 rebounds, Tobias Harris added 21 points and the host Philadelphia 76ers defeated the Toronto Raptors 104-101 in overtime on Monday (Tuesday, December 20, Manila time).

James Harden contributed 14 points, eight assists and seven rebounds for the Sixers, who won their fifth game in a row.

Pascal Siakam led the Raptors with a season-high 38 points to go along with 15 rebounds and six assists. O.G. Anunoby returned from a four-game absence to score 13 points and reserve Chris Boucher had 13 points and 10 rebounds for the Raptors, who lost their sixth straight game.

When Boucher hit a step-back trey with 8:45 left in the fourth, the Raptors held an 86-79 advantage.

Embiid’s short jumper with 5:52 remaining cut the deficit to 92-88.

Thaddeus Young drove to the basket and scored two Toronto possessions later.

De’Anthony Melton hit a trey from the corner, Embiid knocked down a pair of free throws and Harden made a layup to cap a 10-0 run, and the Sixers led 99-96 with 1:32 left.

Siakam hit 1 of 2 free throws and then tied the game at 99 on a difficult bank shot with 5.1 seconds to go.

Embiid missed a 23-foot jumper at the buzzer to force overtime.

Both teams struggled offensively in the extra period.

Harris’ trey with 2:12 remaining gave the Sixers a 104-101 lead.

That advantage held up until the last possession, as Siakam missed a 3-pointer at the buzzer.

After the Sixers built a 14-point lead, the Raptors quickly closed within nine on a basket in the lane by Young and a 3-pointer by Anunoby with 5:37 left in the second quarter.

The Sixers went ahead 57-46 at halftime thanks in large part to 12 points from Embiid and 10 from Harris.

After Toronto cut the deficit to 62-56, the Sixers proceeded to go on a 7-0 run for a 13-point advantage with 7:20 remaining in the third.

A technical foul on Georges Niang followed by Siakam’s trey helped fuel an 11-0 spurt to tie the game at 78 by the end of the third. – Rappler.com

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