76ers center Joel Embiid spent his Sunday night etching his name into the NBA history books. In a seven-point home win over Utah, Embiid put up video game numbers. The 28-year-old recorded a stat line that the NBA literally hadn’t seen before.
Philadelphia’s 7-footer scored a career-high 59 points and grabbed 11 rebounds. If those numbers weren’t impressive enough, Embiid also totaled eight assists and seven blocks in just 38 minutes on the court.
He’s the first player in the league’s history to produce such a robust stat line.
“This is not about me,” Embiid said postgame. “We did it as a team. Obviously, the coaches put me in those positions and my teammates fed me the ball.
“I thought we had great spacing around everything we were doing. … Like I said, all the credit goes to my teammates.”
Embiid clearly takes his success with a side of modesty.
Embiid Was Selected 3rd Overall In The 2018 NBA Draft
The Cameroon-born Embiid is no stranger to success. He’s a five-time All-Star and finished last season as the NBA scoring champion (30.6 points per game). But his Sunday performance was truly something special.
Per ESPN Stats & Information: Embiid became the first player with at least 50 points, 10 rebounds, 5 assists and 5 blocks in a game since blocks became an official stat in 1973-74.
Embiid’s performance was an eye-opener for 76ers head coach Doc Rivers who’s been involved with the NBA as a player or coach since the early 1980s.
“I’ve seen guys score a lot of points,” Rivers said after Philadelphia’s win. “I haven’t seen a guy score a lot of points, rebounds, and then the blocked shots.”
Maybe most impressive was Embiid’s fourth quarter. In that time frame he scored 26 of the Sixers’ 27 points. He swatted away five shots during that same stretch.
A three point attempt in the closing minutes that didn’t connect was his only fourth quarter miss.
“I’ve never seen a more dominating performance when you combine defense and offense,” Rivers added.
Doc Rivers, Embiid and the 76ers will have another few days to marvel at their star player’s historic performance. Philly’s off until Friday evening when they host the Eastern Conference’s top-seed, Milwaukee.
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