By Jerry Wein

Joel Embiid scored 25 points and a tiebreaking 3-pointer as the visiting Sixers beat the Chicago Bulls 114-109.

Philadelphia led by 19 midway through the second quarter before Chicago went on a big run to get back into the game prior to halftime. The Bulls took the lead in the third quarter, and it remained tight the rest of the way. But the 76ers made just enough plays to beat Chicago for the 12th straight time.

“That wasn’t pretty,” coach Doc Rivers said.

“That was the first thing I told our guys. I said we’ll take the win. We’ve been playing great at the beginning of the game, and then we held on to win. … I just thought we lost our rhythm, lost our pace.”

It was tied at 109 after the Bulls’ Nikola Vucevic made two foul shots with 1:10 left in the game. Embiid then missed two free throws after Patrick Williams fouled him away from the ball.

Chicago’s Alex Caruso grabbed the rebound, but Zach LaVine missed a 19-footer. Embiid then nailed an open 3 to give the Sixers a 112-109 lead with 18.1 seconds remaining.

“I can’t believe I missed two free throws,” Embiid said. “Both of them, actually, I thought it was going in. But it happens. Some moments you (stink), some moments you’re good. But I was able to be wide open for the next one. There was no way I wasn’t taking that because I missed the two free throws.”

DeRozan missed on a drive. Alex Caruso then stole a pass from P.J. Tucker, only to miss a 3, and Tobias Harris made two free throws with 4.4 seconds to play.

Embiid had seven rebounds and four assists after sitting out Friday’s win at Toronto because of a sore right knee. James Harden scored 15, though he made just 2 of 13 shots.

Georges Niang had 15 points. Tyrese Maxey, coming off a career-high 44-point outing, finished with 14, and the Sixers improved to 3-4 with their second straight win.

“We got a lot of work to do,” Embiid said. “We blew up the lead, mainly by not playing the right way. We need to be focusing better for 48 minutes.”

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