Comeback Comes Up Short in OT

by Brian Seltzer
Sixers.com Reporter

Snapshot:

In a hard-fought overtime battle Friday at Chesapeake Energy Arena, the 76ers lost to the Oklahoma City Thunder, 127-119.

The contest was the Sixers' first overtime game of the season, and the second stop on a three-game road trip.

Back in the area he was raised, Josh Richardson went for a season-high 28 points. The Norman, Oklahoma native converted 10 of 15 shots overall, hitting 3 of 6 3-point attempts. 

In four previous meetings against his hometown squad (all with Miami), Richardson scored 23 total points. 

Joel Embiid topped all players Friday with 31 points (12-24 fg / 4-8 3fg) and 12 rebounds, registering his sixth double-double in eight appearances. Tobias Harris scored 21 points, while Ben Simmons added 16 points, 11 boards, and eight assists. 

After the Sixers fell behind 54-49 at the break, it was Simmons who sparked the team's comeback bid. He set the tone with a determined, attacking style of play early in the third quarter, and the rest of the roster followed suit. 

The Sixers had an 83-80 lead through three quarters, then widened the gap to nine points, 94-85, on a Harris 3-pointer five minutes into the fourth.

OKC got right back into the game thanks to a 12-2 run. 

With the score tied at 107-107 with 41 seconds left following a pair of Richardson free throws, both the Sixers and the Thunder had opportunities to go ahead late. Neither side was successful, so Friday's bout went to OT. 

Oklahoma City never trailed in the extra period, and used a 9-0 spurt to put the score out of reach. 

Simmons had played every second of the second half and overtime combined until he fouled out with 63 seconds on the clock. His 45 minutes played were the second-highest total of the All-Star's three-year career. 

Despite sinking a season-high 14 3-pointers, the Sixers were outscored by 20 at the free throw line (15-22 PHI / 35-41 OKC). The disparity was influential to Friday's outcome. 

Click here for a complete box score. 

@Sixers Social:

Joel Embiid reached a noteworthy milestone Friday, becoming the second-fasted player in franchise history to score 4,000 points in regular season play. The big man achieved the feat in just 166 games. Only Wilt Chamberlain reached the mark faster.  

Up Next:

It was just a few days ago that the 76ers hosted the Cleveland Cavaliers at The Center and eked out a one-point victory. Now the teams will reconvene in Ohio for a Sunday matinee at 3:00 PM ET. The contest will bring to an end a stretch of nine out of 13 games that the Sixers played on the road.

 

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