Joel Embiid breaks Wilt Chamberlain’s 76ers record with a 70-point game

Joel Embiid drops 70, breaking Wilt Chamberlain's 76ers record
Joel Embiid drops 70, breaking Wilt Chamberlain’s 76ers record | Image Credit:

Philadelphia – After becoming the ninth player in NBA history to score 70 points in a game and breaking Wilt Chamberlain’s club mark of 68 points, Joel Embiid said it was “great” to be in the same conversation as the legendary player.

“Wilt accomplished everything in this league’s history and in basketball in general,” Embiid remarked after the Sixers defeated the Spurs 133-123 on Monday night thanks to his 70 points. “So to be in the same conversation, that’s pretty cool.”

Before Monday’s game, Embiid has never ended with 70 points, 18 rebounds, and 5 assists in the NBA, according to ESPN’s Stats & Information.

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He remarked, “It was just a great night.” “I was feeling good. I’ve already said it a few times: many of my teammates are really selfless, and they simply keep passing the ball to me, which I then complete.”

With 1:41 left in the game, Embiid raced coast to coast for a layup over many players to bring his score to 70 points. He finished it again, shooting 24-for-41 from the field and 21-for-23 from the foul line.

In 36 minutes, he also recorded a season-high 18 rebounds, 5 assists, 1 steal, 1 block, and only 1 turnover.

After three quarters, Embiid tied his previous career best, which he had established against the Utah Jazz the previous year, with a stunning stepback 3-pointer to end the third quarter. He had scored 24 points in the first quarter, 34 in the first half, and 59 points overall.

The 76ers coach Nick Nurse stated, “It kind of hit me, I thought, at the start of the third.” “I believe he had a and-1 and a bucket in the first minute or so. “Wait a minute, he is already like 37, 38, something like that,” I thought to myself. “Wow, that seems like a lot, and we still have half of it left.”

It was unknown at that point if Embiid would have a chance to try for the record or whether the 76ers, like they have done several times this season, would blow the game wide in the fourth quarter and give Embiid the rest of the night off with Philadelphia (29–13) leading by 15 after three quarters.

However, San Antonio (8-35) remained competitive, paced by rookie sensation Victor Wembanyama’s 33 points and 7 rebounds. When Embiid returned to the game with 6:38 left, the Wells Fargo Center audience erupted into a standing ovation.

“The only thing I told my teammates was please just don’t force it,” stated Embiid. “How about we simply play hoops? Pass it if I’m open; if not, make sure you make the appropriate play.”

On the first offensive play after returning to the floor in the fourth quarter, he was fouled right away. He hit both of his free throws to set a new career best. Then, as the last frame developed, he continued to accumulate points. Reserve forward Danuel House Jr. was jeered after taking an uncontested corner three times as the crowd’s demands for Embiid to shoot at every opportunity increased.

Embiid grinned and remarked, “It’s terrible Danuel House was booed for [making the proper play]. “All we wanted to do was play the correct plays at the right times. They found me a lot, of course, and I made shots.”

With 1:57 left, Embiid eventually equaled Chamberlain’s record with two free throws. He then ran coast to coast for the layup to climb to 70 points after Philadelphia earned a stop on the other end. A few seconds later, he was replaced from the game.

In the end, it was simply another one of Embiid’s amazing offensive outbursts this season; the NBA’s most valuable player is still on pace to record the highest scoring season in league history. With 1,156 points in 1,096 minutes through 32 games, he leads the league in points scored per minute played, a feat only Chamberlain has ever accomplished.

Embiid, who has previously won the scoring championship in the NBA the last two seasons, is now averaging 36.1 points per game this season, which is a full three points more than his average from his MVP-winning performance the previous year.

Tyrese Maxey, who finished with 18 points and 8 assists, praised him as “great.” “As I often say, we must not take this for granted. You can’t take Jo for granted, man—not just as teammates, nor as an organization, but as fans as well. It doesn’t matter if you’re a basketball fan or not a Philadelphia fan. He’s doing something unique right now.

He’s not relying just on layups or three-pointers to score. He’s making it off of everything. It’s a free throw from him. There is so much that he is doing. The worst part is that, in addition to anchoring the defense, he is also on the opposite end. He won’t be taking any defense-related nights off. Thus, you know, we’re grateful for him, and everyone else ought to be too.”

Wembanyama, who performed admirably in his debut game against Embiid, was one individual who was pleased with Embiid’s play. After the game, he acknowledged that facing Embiid on Monday night was “inspiring.” Wembanyama remarked, “A few years ago, it was more of a guards game.”

Also Read: Karl-Anthony Towns breaks the Timberwolves record against the Hornets with 62 points

However, it’s back to being a big man’s game now. In terms of the game, I believe it makes sense. We have a few men in the league who, despite their height, accomplish a lot.”It’s because of how the game adapts. We now need to adjust.”

After years of refining his technique, Embiid is now playing at an even higher level. This was demonstrated not only by the fact that he scored more than 70 points, which he accomplished despite not even warming up before the game on Monday because of traffic delays, but also by his belief that he might have scored even more.

“I feel like when you take 40 shots, obviously, you are supposed to have a big night,” Embiid stated. “I was really upset with myself since I had been missing a lot of simple shots all season long. Many simple pull-ups.However, you’re certain to make some and have a great night when you’re firing that many shots—something I never imagined I would be doing in my life.”

Karl-Anthony Towns of Minnesota, who scored a Timberwolves record 62 points in a defeat to the Charlotte Hornets, came very close to matching Embiid’s productive night. According to ESPN Stats & Information, Embiid and Towns became the first duo of NBA players since David Thompson (73) and George Gervin (63) in 1978 to both score at least 60 points in a single day.


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