It’s a Christmas Miracle! Well, actually it’s Joel Embiid (and JJ Redick, and T.J. McConnell). In a much-hyped opening game to kick off the holiday slate, the Sixers (playing their first Christmas game since 2001), grit and grinded their way to a far-from guaranteed win at Madison Square Garden.
It was a game of opposites. The Sixers only turned the ball over 15 times. They shot 83.3% from the line as a team. They beat the Knicks in bench points. Enes Kanter grabbed 8,326 rebounds.
But the Sixers were able to come together down the stretch - even as they began to turn the ball over at their normal, Sixer-esque rate, and never trailed from three minutes left in the third until the end of the game.
Joel Embiid finished with 25 points and 16 rebounds (his third ever 25/15 game) to go with 3 assists and 3 blocks (tying a Sixers Christmas record). JJ Redick scored 24 pts on 50% from three, while balancing his (somehow only) two turnovers with two steals and some important free throws down the strech. But the end of the game belonged to T.J. McConnell. He finished with a complete, all-around line of 15 points (6-for-11 from the floor, 2-of-4 from range), 5 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals, and a single turnover.
Simmons had an incredibly quiet game, though he shot 50% from the floor and ended up with 8 points and 8 rebounds.
And that’s all for us today, enjoy the rest of your holiday, and thanks for being here with us.