Embiid Scores 59 and Breathes Life into Sixers

Embiid's 59 Breathes Life Into Sixers
Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid, #21, drives past Utah Jazz forward Kelly Olynyk, #41, during the second quarter at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia Nov. 13, 2022. (Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports)

On the tail end of a back-to-back, Joel Embiid put up a career-high 59 points in a Sixers win against the Utah Jazz. Embiid single-handedly brought the Sixers back to .500 at 7-7, good enough for sixth overall in the East. Embiid’s final stat line was 59 points, 11 rebounds, and 8 assists with 7 blocks. He became the first player with a minimum of 50 points, 10 rebounds, 5 assists, and 5 blocks in a game. He did all of that less than 24 hours after putting up 42 points against the Hawks. Embiid is the fourth player to score over 100 points in back-to-back nights alongside Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, and Bradley Beal. But, most importantly, he managed to breathe life back into a 76ers team struggling out of the gates.

The sixers found themselves at a pedestrian 5-7 before ‘The Process’ carried them to their latest wins. The team was making headlines for all of the wrong reasons, more than likely second only to the Nets. James Harden suffered a tendon strain on his right foot that’s expected to keep him sidelined for at least a couple of weeks yet. The initial diagnosis was for about a month, and for a player who has been injury prone over the last few years, a foot injury this early into the season is less than ideal.

Speaking of injuries, speculation about Embiid’s injury from the offseason affecting his play loomed around the center. His performances were so poor, some were wondering if it affected his conditioning coming into the season. Some even wondered if Embiid was just disinterested. Philadelphia fans were clamoring, many still, for the end of Doc Rivers‘s tenure as the Sixers head coach.

In a season that started to look over before it even started, Embiid stepped up and saved it. That’s what superstars do. If the Sixers can continue to ride the wave well after Harden returns, they could find themselves atop the East. They’ll look to carry the momentum when they host the Bucks on November 18th.

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