LeBron James became the second player in NBA history to score 38,000 career points, but Joel Embiid had 35 points and 11 rebounds as the Philadelphia 76ers held off the Los Angeles Lakers 113-112 on Sunday night for their seventh win in nine games.
Russell Westbrook failed to make a clear shot or last-second pass to defend Embiid, allowing the 76ers to hold on for their fourth straight road win. James Harden added 24 points and 13 assists for Philadelphia, which swept the season series and beat Los Angeles for the sixth time in a row.
James had 35 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds for the Lakers, who have lost three straight after a five-game winning streak.
James surpassed 38,000 points with the jump that was part of his 8-for-9 start with 16 points in the first quarter. The Lakers crowd gave him a standing ovation when the milestone was announced in the next timeout, and Philadelphia coach Doc Rivers smilingly hugged James in celebration.
James and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar are the only members of the NBA’s 38,000-point club, and James will pass Abdul-Jabbar (38,387 points) atop the career scoring list next month if he continues at his current pace.
[When will LeBron pass Kareem: NBA all-time scoring tracker]
In a well-played game, no team led by more than eight points. Georges Niang hit a 3-pointer off an assist from Embiid with 1:28 left to give Philadelphia a 111-109 lead.
A lengthy video review then overturned the call and resulted in a turnover for James before Embiid drained a 14-foot jumper with 45.5 seconds remaining. Troy Brown Jr. hit a 3-pointer from the corner to cut Philly’s lead to one point, and Embiid missed a jumper with Westbrook in the face.
Westbrook went to the hoop with a look to win it, but failed to get off a shot or a pass, with an apparent crosscourt pass attempt deflected off Niang’s hands before time expired.
Westbrook had 20 points, 14 rebounds and 11 assists, which enriched his NBA record with his 198th career triple-double. Westbrook has four triple-doubles off the bench this season, passing Detlef Schrempf for the career triple-double record as a reserve.
Tyrese Maxey scored 16 points and Tobias Harris had 15 in Philly’s fourth straight road win against the Lakers since March 2020.
Associated Press reports.
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