Embiid has 32, 76ers top Blazers 105-95 for 4th straight win
PORTLAND (AP) — Joel Embiid scored 32 points and the Philadelphia 76ers stretched their winning streak to four games, all on the road, with a 105-95 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers on Thursday.
James Harden added 16 points and 14 assists for the Sixers, who led by as many as 26 points before holding off a late Portland rally.
Damian Lillard had 25 points and 11 assists for the Blazers and Jerami Grant scored 24 points against his former team.
Jusuf Nurkic’s layup closed the gap to 92-80 with 6:17 left, but Embiid answered with a dunk and a free throw. Grant’s 3-pointer narrowed it to 95-86 with 3:49 left.
Embiid picked up his fifth foul and Anfernee Simons made a pair of free throws to get within 95-88.
Tyrese Maxey’s layup and De’Anthony Melton’s free throws got the Sixers’ lead back to double digits and Portland couldn’t catch up.
Currently on a five-game western road trip, the 76ers have won the first four games. Philadelphia has won eight of 10 games this month, building on an eight-game winning streak in December.
Meanwhile, Portland has slid with just three wins in 10 games since the first of the year.
The Sixers jumped out to a 26-14 lead in the opening quarter behind Embiid, who had 10 points in his first six minutes and finished the first half with 17 points.
Philadelphia led by as many as 25 points en route to a 57-34 lead at the break as the Blazers struggled to score, going 13 of 42 (31%) from the floor. Portland hit just one of 14 3-point attempts.
Embiid’s dunk put the Sixers up 75-49 midway through the third quarter. But Portland went on a 14-0 run late in the period to narrow the gap to 75-63.
Portland played without Gary Payton II because of a sore calf.
76ers: Rivers joked that the 76ers would be happy to play in Paris, just like the Bulls and the Pistons earlier Thursday. He added London and Rome to the list of locations he wouldn’t object to. … Harden has 19 point/assist double-doubles this season.
Trail Blazers: The game against the 76ers kicked off a six-game homestand for the Blazers. … Lillard was 1 of 10 from the field in the opening half. … Portland’s 32 first-half points were a season low.
CAN’T GET NO SATISFACTION
Asked before the game if he could consider the five-game road trip a success after winning the first three games, Rivers was emphatic: “No, I mean really, no. We want to win games.”
76ers: Visit Sacramento on Saturday to conclude the road trip.
Trail Blazers: Host the Lakers on Sunday.