Here are the scores, updates, and results of the NBA 2020-2021 Preseason match between the Philadelphia 76ers (PHI) and the Washington Wizards (WAS) on December 24, 2020, at the Wells Fargo Center Philadelphia.
Despite Bradley Beal’s game-high 31 points and Russell Westbrook’s opening night triple-double, Washington Wizards bowed down to the Philadelphia 76ers, 113-107, in the 2020-21 NBA season opener for both teams.
In the first frame, Wizards were able to gather an early eight-point lead, thanks to the team’s 13-2 run, sparked by rookie Deni Advija’s first-ever 3-pointer of his NBA career.
This, however, was countered by Philadelphia in the second quarter, taking a 13-point lead on back-to-back threes from Seth Curry and Joel Embiid.
Then everything changed for the Wizards when Washington’s three-man lineup played all at once. Westbrook and Davis Bertans, finally, checked into the game, joining Beal.
After the assist of Bertans to a cutting Moritz Wagner, Beal knocked down a 3-pointer on the following possession. Further, in the dying seconds of the first half, buckets from Westbrook and Beal gave the Wizards a one-point lead at halftime.
In a post-game interview, Beal said: “It’s just a matter of your will and you wanting to get in a stance and defend. I took pride in that. I think we all took pride in that. We weren’t guarding the way we knew we could in the first half. We came out in the second halfway more physical, more talkative, got our switching together, and we cleaned up a lot of stuff that we were slipping up on in the first half. From that standpoint, it was great. It was great to see that we were able to make those adjustments on the fly. At the same time, we have to be better.”
From a 1-point lead heading into the third quarter, the Wizards, banking on their defense, held Philadelphia without a field goal until the 6:06 mark and lead by as much as 28 points with 6:40 left in the third quarter.
Philadelphia shooting just 5-22 (.227) from the field in the third quarter, turned to Joel Embiid in the fourth. In fact, it was his jumper at the 7:37 mark that tied the game at 88.
The big man, who played for almost 35 minutes, finished with a team-high 29 points and 14 rebounds.
However, it was Ben Simmons dunk with 21.7 seconds remaining on the clock that put the 76ers up by four. Philadelphia hit its free throws down the stretch to seal the win.
In a losing effort, Westbrook became the first player in franchise history to record a triple-double in his debut, totaling 21 points, 11 rebounds, and 15 assists. Westbrook reached the milestone quickly, grabbed his tenth rebound in the third quarter.
Philadelphia vs Washington
The scores: 30-26; 58-59; 73-83; 113-107
76ers (113) – Joel Embiid 29, Shake Milton 19, Ben Simmons 16, Seth Curry 13, Furkan Korkmaz 11, Tobias Harris 10, Tyrese Maxey 6, Dwight Howard 4, Mike Scott 3, Danny Green 2, Matisse Thybulle 0.
Wizards (107) – Bradley Beal 31, Russell Westbrook 21, Davis Bertans 14, Thomas Bryant 10, Ish Smith 7, Deni Avdija 7, Isaac Bonga 5, Moritz Wagner 4, Troy Brown 3, Robin Lopez 3, Raul Neto 2.