The Sixers snapped the Wizards’ five-game winning streak Tuesday with a 115-102 victory.
The Wizards had been playing surprisingly well in the absence of All-Star guard John Wall, who underwent arthroscopic left knee surgery at the end of January. That was until they came to the Wells Fargo Center.
Bradley Beal's 30 points, seven rebounds and five assists were not enough to counter a 27-point, 12-rebound double-double from Joel Embiid and another 20 points and seven boards from Dario Saric. Embiid reached 20 points for the 30th time this season.
“You just beat a team that was hot,” Brett Brown said. “They'd won five games in a row, their style of play when you study them during that five-game stretch was really impressive. They shared the ball, they ran with great pace and they guarded.”
• The Sixers sprinted out to an early first-quarter lead as Wizards not named Otto Porter Jr. and Markieff Morris struggled to score. The opening quarter included an alley-oop from T.J. McConnell to Jerryd Bayless and threes by McConnell and Amir Johnson.
• There were more third-quarter ups and downs. The Sixers committed turnovers on three consecutive possessions in the third. During that quarter, the Wizards, led by 11 points from Beal, cut the Sixers’ lead from 19 to seven. The Sixers committed 17 turnovers (leading to 22 Wizards’ points) on the night.
“We just wanted to come out and be aggressive, especially after the bad one we had against Indiana,” Embiid said. “We just wanted to be aggressive, especially defensively.”
• The Wizards didn’t go away in the fourth. They got within eight with four minutes to play. The Sixers pulled away on a 10-3 run to hold on for the game in which they led by as many as 22 points.
• The Sixers have the rare opportunity to play five straight home games leading up to the All-Star break. The team is focused on maximizing the rare schedule, especially as it faces Eastern Conference competitors Wizards and Heat.
“Coach talked about that,” Saric said. “After we finished with the meeting, he put on the screen, 'Four more, guys.' It's important in that situation. Playing four games at home in front of our fans, in front of the crazy energy from the Super Bowl. We need it, we need it. We really need to be focused for the four games and try to win. I think if we win before [the All-Star break], we get better as we go on and be ready for the last part of the season.”
• The Super Bowl champions were in the building. Members of the Eagles' offensive line rang the ceremonial bell to kick off the game.