Joel Embiid has overcome a gruesome finger dislocation and Ben Simmons posted a near triple-double as the Philadelphia 76ers snapped their four-game NBA losing streak with victory Oklahoma City Thunder.
Superstar centre Embiid dislocated his left ring finger in the first quarter but played through the pain to score 18 points, grab nine rebounds and dish out eight assists.
Australian point guard Simmons added 17 points, 15 rebounds and eight assists in the 120-113 home victory, which followed four straight losses on the road.
Embiid made a brief stop in the locker room after his injury, got the finger taped and returned to start the second quarter.
— Dylan Delaney (@DylanDelaney13) January 7, 2020
The Thunder, who had won five straight, closed within two points with three minutes left before the Sixers scored nine straight points to put the game away.
Centre Steven Adams had 24 points and 15 rebounds for the Thunder and Chris Paul added 18 points.
Josh Richardson scored 23 points for the Sixers while Simmons fell two assists shy of a triple-double in another solid game without a basket beyond 22 feet.
After Simmons the second of his two career 3-pointers on December 7, coach Brett Brown implored him to shoot more of them.
Simmons responded by doubling down on his refusal to shoot from long range.
He had a meaningless heave in a December 10 game against Denver but otherwise has not attempted an honest 3.
“Evidently, I have failed,” Brown said.
“It’s something that we’re all mindful and this is one of these things that is never going to go away. The attention that this has received is remarkable.
“I guess I helped fuel it. I own it. I’ve got to help him find this and most importantly he has to help himself.”