After becoming the ninth player in NBA history to score 70 points in an NBA game and breaking Wilt Chamberlain’s franchise mark of 68 points in the process, Joel Embiid stated that it was “great” to be put in the same conversation as Chamberlain. Embiid’s accomplishment resulted in the breaking of Chamberlain’s record.
Embiid made this statement after the Sixers defeated the San Antonio Spurs by a score of 133-123 on Monday night. “Obviously, Wilt accomplished… everything [in] the history of this league, and basketball in general,” Embiid added. “So to be in the same conversation, that’s pretty cool.”
According to ESPN’s Stats & Information, Embiid finished the game with 70 points, 18 rebounds, and 5 assists, a line that has never occurred in the history of the NBA prior to Monday’s game.
JOEL EMBIID IS PUTTING ON A SHOW. HE HAS 65 POINTS AND COUNTING…
— NBA (@NBA) January 23, 2024
He remarked, “It was no doubt a wonderful evening.” I had it going for me. There are a lot of teammates who are incredibly selfless, and they just kept giving me the ball, and I simply completed it. I expressed this a few times on multiple occasions.
Embiid finished it again and over again, to the point where he went 24-for-41 from the field and 21-for-23 from the foul line. He ultimately reached 70 points from the field when he went coast-to-coast for a basket over several defenders with 1:41 remaining in the game.
When Embiid finished the third quarter with a stunning stepback three-pointer, he had already scored 24 points in the first quarter, 34 points in the first half, and 59 points, which was the same as his previous career high, which he had set against the Utah Jazz at this very same venue the previous year.
Joel Embiid receives a standing ovation after dropping 70 points 👏
— The Sporting News (@sportingnews) January 23, 2024
“The only thing I told my teammates was please just don’t force it,” Embiid told reporters. “All we need to do is play basketball. If I am open, you should pass it to me; if I am not open, you should make sure that you make the appropriate play.
When he returned to the floor for the first offensive possession of the fourth quarter, he was immediately fouled, and he made both of the free throws, which allowed him to set a new career best in the process.
After that, he continued to add to his total as the final frame worked its way through. The audience became more and more demanding that Embiid shoot at every single opportunity, to the point where reserve forward Danuel House Jr. was jeered for taking a corner three when there was an open one.
“It’s unfortunate that Danuel House got booed for [making the right play],” Embiid said with a smile. “It’s unfortunate.” We were simply attempting to play in the appropriate manner and to make the appropriate plays. They caught me quite a bit, and it is obvious that I made shots.
Embiid eventually tied Chamberlain’s record with a pair of free throws with 1 minute and 57 seconds remained in the game.
Then, after Philadelphia made a stop at the other end of the court, he ran from coast to coast for the layup that brought his total to 70, and a few seconds later, he was taken out of the game by a substitute.
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Embiid, who is already coming off of winning the scoring title in the NBA each of the past two seasons, is now averaging 36.1 points per game this season. This is a full three points greater than what he posted last year in his rookie season in which he won the Most Valuable Player award.
“He’s great,” added Tyrese Maxey, who finished with 18 points and 8 assists in the game. Every time I speak to someone, I remind them that we cannot take this for granted.
You can’t take Jo for granted, dude, not only as teammates, not as an organization, but as fans. Even if you’re not a fan of Philadelphia or even if you’re just a fan of basketball, you can’t ignore Jo. It’s remarkable what he’s doing at this very moment.