Philadelphia 76ers big man Joel Embiid needed to give his team a boost on Friday night, as his team traveled to an Atlanta Hawks team that had been playing some very good basketball coming into the game (winners of eight of their last nine games).
The Sixers were sitting at just 10-11 on the year and waiting for any kind of spark. With just under a minute left in the game, Embiid did just that, hitting a game-winning shot.
CLUTCH BUCKET FROM JOEL pic.twitter.com/jXwoDZBOJv
— NBC Sports Philadelphia (@NBCSPhilly) December 4, 2021
In the end, Hawks star guard Trae Young did not get his chance at a game-winning shot as Danilo Galinnari took it instead. Heading into the game, the Hawks have been showing the rest of the NBA why they are one of the league's best teams: their depth. Atlanta can throw 10-12 players at you every night that can score in double figures and defend, that is not something many teams can say. They tried to use that to their advantage and use Young as a decoy in the final play–and it worked– as Danilo got his shot off, it just didn't go down.
Instead, Embiid and his final-minute shot are the story of the night. With both the Sixers and the Hawks struggling to get their offense going it was only fitting that the one player who wasn't struggling would hit the game's biggest shot. For the game, Embiid ended up leading both teams in scoring AND rebounding. What a game for the all-star center who finished with 28 points, 12 rebounds, two blocks, and a shot to remember.