Joel Embiid racked up 27 points, nine rebounds and eight assists as the Philadelphia 76ers routed the Atlanta Hawks 127-111 in Game 3 to reclaim home-court advantage in the series. Ben Simmons had 18 points and seven assists, while Tobias Harris contributed 22 in the win. Trae Young led the Hawks with 28 points.
The 76ers easily covered the -1.5 spread and the over hit at 223.5. While Embiid didn’t replicate his point production from Games 1 and 2, he picked his spots well and was a defensive force. Simmons was more aggressive going to the basket and Harris consistently made shots when the offense appeared to stall out.
The Sixers lost Danny Green to a calf strain early in the game, but Matisse Thybulle stepped up in his spot with two early steals. Philadelphia held a 28-20 lead after the first quarter, but the Hawks stormed back in the second period to cut the halftime deficit to 61-56. The third quarter ended up being the difference in the game.
Philly opened up 8-8 from the floor after halftime, going on a 19-6 run. Embiid, who is playing through a meniscus injury, appeared to be in pain after coming down with a rebound. He stayed in the game, but seemed to still be favoring his leg and winced after a big dunk. The Hawks went cold from the floor, making just six shots in the quarter.
Embiid took a hard fall midway through the fourth quarter with Philadelphia holding a 109-92 lead. Given his injury situation, it was surprising to see him in the game at that point. The big man closed out the contest despite the 76ers holding a massive lead. His status will be worth monitoring in the coming days in the event he aggravated the tear.
The Hawks will have to go back to the drawing board after two straight defeats. This game came down to Atlanta’s poor three-point shooting. After hitting 20 triples in Game 1 on 47 attempts, the Hawks 36.7 percent in Game 2 and slumped to 26.1 percent. This could’ve been an uglier margin had the Sixers not missed 14 free throws.
Game 4 is Monday in Atlanta at 7:30 PM ET.