WASHINGTON — Tyrese Maxey scored 28 points, Buddy Hield added 23 in his second game with Philadelphia and the 76ers snapped a four-game losing streak with a 119-113 victory over the Washington Wizards on Saturday night.
Rookie Ricky Council IV added 19 points and 10 rebounds for the Sixers in their sixth consecutive game without seven-time All-Star Joel Embiid, who underwent left knee surgery on Tuesday.
“He was big time,” Maxey said of Council’s 11th NBA appearance and first of more than 12 minutes. “He balled. Defensively, offensively, energy-wise. He got some big buckets down the stretch. I’m proud of him.”
Maxey also had nine rebounds and seven assists in his return after missing Friday’s loss against Atlanta with an illness. Hield — who was traded from Indiana in a three-team deal completed Thursday — had 20 points in his Philadelphia debut on Friday, marking the first time he’s surpassed 20 in consecutive games since Nov. 21 and 22.
“It’s just hard to guard when there’s speed on the ball and shooting, and shooting off the ball,” said Sixers coach Nick Nurse of the Maxey-Hield combination.
Philadelphia outrebounded Washington 48-39 and came up with three key late offensive boards — two from Council — to make the difference during a tightly contested fourth quarter. The effort helped the fifth-place Sixers remain two games in front of Indiana in the Eastern Conference.
“It’s unreal right now,” Council said. “But once you out there, it’s pretty simple. Just play hard and be yourself.”
Tyus Jones scored a season-high 25 points and sank a career-best six 3-pointers for the Wizards, who lost their sixth straight and sank to 2-7 under interim coach Brian Keefe.
Deni Avdija added 21 points and 13 rebounds and Kyle Kuzma scored 21 points for Washington, which never led after the first quarter, but closed what had been a 15-point deficit to two following an 11-2 run early in the fourth.
The Sixers responded with a pair of key putbacks, with Kelly Oubre Jr. following his own shot from the right corner and dunking in traffic before Council added another follow of his effort in the paint to stretch it to 104-98.
Philadelphia kept their lead at least two possessions from there. Council dropped in another layup after outmuscling Jordan Poole for a rebound to extend it to 115-109 inside the final minute, then sank two late free throws to seal it.
“I just feel like I’m a dog,” Council said. “A lot of people say it, but not a lot of people about it. When I’m out there, I don’t know, I can’t really explain it. I don’t see nothing but the goal and my teammates.” UP NEXT
76ers: Visit Cleveland on Monday night.
Wizards: Visit Dallas on Monday night.
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