By Jerry Wein
Last night’s Sixers win in Sacto is another example of a game Philly would have lost last season, when Brett Brown was the coach and the team had no direction.
Joel Embiid had 25 points and 17 rebounds and lockdown defense in the fourth quarter beat the Kings 119-111.
Tobias Harris and Seth Curry each added 22 points as the Sixers used a 10-0 run to take control of the game in the fourth and win for the sixth time in seven games.
“I loved the defense first,” coach Doc Rivers said. “This is a very good offensive team. Holding them to 20 points in the third and fourth quarter is great. I loved our execution. It’s important at the end of the game our guys understand who we want to play through and the ball moves from there.”
The Kings took a 99-97 lead on a layup by Harrison Barnes with 7:26 to go and then didn’t score again for nearly three minutes, missing seven straight shots and committing a turnover.
“We just started playing better defense honestly,” Rivers said. “A lot of it too is we kept them out of the paint. That’s what created a lot of (their) 3s.”
Shake Milton tied the game with a layup and then Harris and Milton hit 3-pointers to put Philly up six points. Embiid’s two free throws made it 107-99 and the Sixers held on from there to snap Sacramento’s four-game winning streak.
De’Aaron Fox led the Kings with 34 points and 10 assists. Buddy Hield added 21 points and Marvin Bagley III had 17.