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Embiid scores 26, Sixers beat Celtics 89-80

BOSTON (AP) Joel Embiid is headed to the NBA All-Star game for the first time, and he celebrated with another impressive performance.

Embiid scored 26 points and matched a career best with 16 rebounds, leading the 76ers to an 89-80 win over the Boston Celtics on Thursday night.

Dario Saric scored 16 for Philadelphia, which won for the sixth time in seven games. T.J. McConnell had 15 points - all in the second half.

Just one week after Boston erased a 22-point deficit on its way to a 114-103 victory over Philadelphia in London, the Sixers led by as many as 21 and turned away one last rally by the Celtics down the stretch.

''We knew that it was going to be the same team. It wasn't going to be any new plays,'' Embiid said. ''We were just physical. Last time they played us when they had that comeback, they were more physical than us. So tonight I think we were more physical than them.''

Boston played without All-Star guard Kyrie Irving, who rested a sore left shoulder. Al Horford and Marcus Morris each scored 14 points.

After winning seven in a row, Boston has lost two straight.

''I don't want to take anything away from Philadelphia,'' Boston coach Brad Stevens said. ''They certainly made us look poor. If you're not going to own your own space, then you're going to turn the ball over.''

The Celtics had no answer for Embiid, who was 10 for 19 from the floor and 6 of 7 at the foul line. He also had six assists and blocked two shots.

The Sixers forced 19 turnovers and outrebounded the Celtics 41-31 while avoiding a season sweep.

''It's been a trend for us the last two games. For whatever reason, we've been sloppy on offense,'' Horford said. ''Other teams are putting pressure on us and speeding us up a little bit and we're not handling it too well.''

Marcus Smart scored 13 and Jaylen Brown had 12 points for Boston.

Embiid scored 10 in the third quarter and McConnell had nine points in the period, helping the Sixers pull away. Jayson Tatum's 3-pointer with 2:01 remaining trimmed Philadelphia's lead to 86-79, but Boston's rally fizzled from there.

PLAYOFFS?

Halfway through the season, much-improved Philadelphia (21-20) is in playoff contention. The Sixers are coming off wins against the top two teams in the Eastern Conference this week in Toronto (30-13) and Boston (34-12).

''We feel like we're right there with them,'' Embiid said. ''I don't know what seed we're going to be, but that's a potential matchup in the playoffs, so you always want to come out and like try to dominate, let them know that it's not going to be easy.''

ALL-STAR INDEED

Embiid pulled down 16 rebounds for the third time in his career. He got the news earlier Thursday that he was the first Philadelphia player selected as an All-Star starter since Allen Iverson in the 2010-2011 season. Embiid is the first Sixers All-Star since Jrue Holiday in 2013.

''I'm just very proud of him,'' coach Brett Brown said.

TIP-INS

76ers: McConnell was coming off a career-high 18 points Monday against Toronto. ... JJ Redick, who injured his left leg Monday against Toronto, did not play.

Celtics: Irving made the All-Star game for the fifth time. ... The Celtics honored Jo Jo White, a two-time NBA champion who played 10 seasons for Boston, with a video tribute and a No. 10 draped over his regular seat. White died Tuesday at age 71.

UP NEXT

76ers: Host Milwaukee on Saturday night.

Celtics: Host Orlando on Sunday.

Copyright 2018 by AP. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of AP is strictly prohibited.

Key Players
J. Embiid
21 C
K. Irving
11 PG
32.7 Min. Per Game 32.7
24.1 Pts. Per Game 24.1
5.0 Ast. Per Game 5.0
3.6 Reb. Per Game 3.6
48.7 Field Goal % 47.3
48.5 Three Point % 47.3
80.0 Free Throw % 88.4
  Defensive rebound by Robert Covington 0:15
  Marcus Morris missed 3-pt. jump shot 0:17
+ 1 T.J. McConnell made 2nd of 2 free throws 0:21
  Team rebound 0:21
  T.J. McConnell missed 1st of 2 free throws 0:21
  Personal foul on Marcus Smart 0:21
  Full timeout called 0:27
+ 1 Jayson Tatum made 2nd of 2 free throws 0:27
  Jayson Tatum missed 1st of 2 free throws 0:27
  Team rebound 0:27
  Personal foul on T.J. McConnell 0:27
Team Stats
Points 89 80
Field Goals 34-73 (46.6%) 30-74 (40.5%)
3-Pointers 6-17 (35.3%) 7-29 (24.1%)
Free Throws 15-17 (88.2%) 13-17 (76.5%)
Total Rebounds 51 38
Offensive 8 3
Defensive 33 28
Team 10 7
Assists 18 13
Steals 10 7
Blocks 5 5
Turnovers 22 19
Fouls 20 20
Technicals 0 0
26 PTS, 16 REB, 6 AST
14 PTS, 3 REB, 3 AST
1234T
away team logo 76ers 21-20 2118321889
home team logo Celtics 34-12 1913212780
Team Stats
away team logo 76ers 21-20 108.8 PPG 49.5 RPG 25.8 APG
home team logo Celtics 34-12 101.4 PPG 41.7 RPG 21.2 APG
Key Players
J. Embiid C 22.9 PPG 11.0 RPG 3.2 APG 48.3 FG%
A. Horford C 12.9 PPG 7.4 RPG 4.7 APG 48.9 FG%
Top Scorers
J. Embiid C 26 PTS 16 REB 6 AST
A. Horford C 14 PTS 3 REB 3 AST
46.6 FG% 40.5
35.3 3PT FG% 24.1
88.2 FT% 76.5
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
J. Embiid 34 26 16 6 1 2 4 4 10/19 0/1 6/7 3 13 53 +10
D. Saric 33 16 6 2 3 0 4 3 6/14 2/5 2/2 0 6 25 -1
B. Simmons 34 8 7 4 1 0 3 3 4/9 0/0 0/0 2 5 21 -3
R. Covington 40 5 2 2 1 1 3 2 1/5 1/4 2/2 0 2 10 +9
J. Bayless 24 4 2 2 0 0 1 2 2/5 0/1 0/0 1 1 9 +8
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
J. Embiid 34 26 16 6 1 2 4 4 10/19 0/1 6/7 3 13 53 +10
D. Saric 33 16 6 2 3 0 4 3 6/14 2/5 2/2 0 6 25 -1
B. Simmons 34 8 7 4 1 0 3 3 4/9 0/0 0/0 2 5 21 -3
R. Covington 40 5 2 2 1 1 3 2 1/5 1/4 2/2 0 2 10 +9
J. Bayless 24 4 2 2 0 0 1 2 2/5 0/1 0/0 1 1 9 +8
Bench MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
T. McConnell 25 15 2 2 3 0 4 1 5/8 2/2 3/4 0 2 20 +5
T. Booker 14 6 2 0 0 0 0 3 3/3 0/0 0/0 1 1 8 +10
J. Anderson 16 5 2 0 0 0 2 1 1/5 1/3 2/2 0 2 5 +7
A. Johnson 12 4 2 0 1 1 1 1 2/2 0/0 0/0 1 1 7 0
T. Luwawu-Cabarrot 3 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0/3 0/1 0/0 0 0 1 0
J. Redick - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
R. Holmes - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
D. Jackson - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
J. Young - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
F. Korkmaz - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
M. Fultz - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 235 89 41 18 10 5 22 20 34/73 6/17 15/17 8 33 159 +45
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
A. Horford 34 14 3 3 1 2 3 4 5/11 1/4 3/4 0 3 23 -2
M. Smart 34 13 5 1 0 0 4 3 6/11 1/4 0/0 0 5 16 +6
J. Brown 33 12 3 4 1 0 1 4 4/12 2/7 2/3 0 3 23 -9
J. Tatum 36 11 4 0 2 2 2 3 4/11 1/3 2/4 0 4 17 -2
A. Baynes 15 2 4 0 0 1 1 4 1/4 0/1 0/0 0 4 6 -8
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
A. Horford 34 14 3 3 1 2 3 4 5/11 1/4 3/4 0 3 23 -2
M. Smart 34 13 5 1 0 0 4 3 6/11 1/4 0/0 0 5 16 +6
J. Brown 33 12 3 4 1 0 1 4 4/12 2/7 2/3 0 3 23 -9
J. Tatum 36 11 4 0 2 2 2 3 4/11 1/3 2/4 0 4 17 -2
A. Baynes 15 2 4 0 0 1 1 4 1/4 0/1 0/0 0 4 6 -8
Bench MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
M. Morris 27 14 6 1 0 0 3 1 4/9 2/5 4/4 1 5 19 -16
S. Larkin 23 8 3 1 2 0 1 0 3/6 0/1 2/2 1 2 14 -3
T. Rozier 20 4 1 2 1 0 2 0 2/7 0/4 0/0 0 1 8 -11
D. Theis 7 2 2 1 0 0 1 1 1/3 0/0 0/0 1 1 5 -3
A. Nader 3 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0/0 0/0 0/0 0 0 -1 -1
S. Ojeleye 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0/0 0/0 0/0 0 0 0 +4
G. Hayward - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
K. Irving - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
J. Bird - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
K. Allen - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
G. Yabusele - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 235 80 31 13 7 5 19 20 30/74 7/29 13/17 3 28 130 -45