January 2, 2019 / 6:42 AM / 8 months ago

Embiid returns in big way, boosts 76ers over Clippers

EditorsNote: changes to “JJ” in third graf

Joel Embiid returned after missing a game with a sore left knee and compiled 28 points and 19 rebounds to lift the visiting Philadelphia 76ers to a 119-113 win over the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday night.

Embiid, the team’s leading scorer (26.5 points per game) and rebounder (13.3 boards per game), missed the Sixers’ 129-95 road loss to the Portland Trail Blazers on Sunday.

JJ Redick, who spent four seasons with the Clippers, scored 16 of his 18 points in the first half for the 76ers (24-14), who moved a season-high 10 games over .500 for the fourth time this season. Jimmy Butler scored 16 points, and Ben Simmons had 14 points, nine rebounds and eight assists.

Lou Williams, who was drafted 45th overall by Philadelphia in 2005 and played his first seven seasons with the 76ers, scored 22 points off the bench for the Clippers, who have lost four in a row against Philadelphia. Danilo Gallinari and Tobias Harris scored 21 points each, and Montrezl Harrell had 20 points and 10 rebounds for Los Angeles.

The Clippers trailed by 15 points with 7:01 left when Butler and Los Angeles guard Avery Bradley were ejected after pushing each other. The Clippers followed with a 10-0 run and then got within four points on a three-point play by Harrell with 2:33 left.

Harrell had a chance to cut the deficit to three, but he missed two free throws with 58.1 seconds left.

The 76ers scored 76 points in the first half, their highest-scoring half and the most the Clippers have allowed in a half this season. Philadelphia led by as many as 24 points in the second quarter before taking an 18-point lead into the break.

The 76ers eased back ahead by 21 points on two occasions during the third quarter, but the Clippers closed the quarter on a 10-2 run to get within 13.

Embiid scored 15 points in the first quarter to help the 76ers to a 41-28 lead. Philadelphia shot 15 of 27 from the floor in the opening quarter, 4 of 9 from 3-point range and outrebounded the Clippers 16-6.

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