Joel Embiid had 36 points, 18 rebounds and four blocks to lift the surging Philadelphia 76ers past the host Cleveland Cavaliers 118-109 on Wednesday.
Embiid appeared to foul out with 4:12 remaining, but the Sixers challenged the call and the offensive foul was overturned.
James Harden added 28 points and 12 assists for his 32nd game this season with at least 10 points and 10 assists, setting a franchise record. Maurice Cheeks and Wilt Chamberlain each had 31 in one season.
Tyrese Maxey scored 23 points for the Sixers, who won their sixth in a row.
Harden’s two free throws with 51.7 seconds left gave the visitors a 115-107 advantage and helped seal the victory.
Caris LeVert led the Cavaliers with 24 points and Donovan Mitchell added 21. Darius Garland and Cedi Osman had 15 apiece and Evan Mobley contributed 13 points and 12 rebounds.
The Cavaliers played without Jarrett Allen (eye contusion) for the third straight game.
Osman hit two free throws with 2:37 remaining to bring the Cavaliers within 110-107.
But that’s as close as they would get.
Harden drove to the basket and scored for a 105-98 Sixers lead with 6:13 left and it held up.
The Cavaliers pulled out to a 46-41 lead with 4:42 remaining in the second quarter after a dunk by LeVert. Philadelphia’s Tobias Harris was upset about a non-call and was whistled for a technical foul.
The chippy play continued and LeVert drew a technical foul with 2:49 left.
LeVert converted a rare four-point play with 0.1 seconds left and the Cavaliers led 60-55 at halftime. LeVert led Cleveland with 14 points, all in the second quarter.
Embiid was stellar with 24 points and nine rebounds for the Sixers in the opening half.
The Cavaliers opened the third quarter with an 8-0 run capped by Lamar Stevens’ trey, for a quick 13-point advantage, 68-55.
The Sixers rallied to go ahead 71-70 with 5:19 remaining following Maxey’s 3-pointer from the wing.
Georges Niang knocked down a trey from the corner as the third-quarter buzzer sounded and the Sixers took an 84-83 advantage.
–Field Level Media