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James Harden, Joel Embiid Light Up Twitter on Christmas as 76ers Roll Past Knicks

Tyler Conway@@jtylerconwayFeatured Columnist IVDecember 25, 2022

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - DECEMBER 25: Joel Embiid #21 of the Philadelphia 76ers walks to the bench during the first quarter of the game against the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden on December 25, 2022 in New York City.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Dustin Satloff/Getty Images)
Dustin Satloff/Getty Images

The NBA's hottest team resides in Philadelphia.

Joel Embiid had 35 points and James Harden added a 29-point, 13-assist double-double as the 76ers came from behind to earn a 119-112 win over the New York Knicks on Christmas Day at Madison Square Garden.

The Sixers have reeled off eight straight wins, tied with the Brooklyn Nets for the longest streak in the NBA.

Adam Aaronson @SixersAdam

FINAL: Sixers 119, Knicks 112.<br><br>The first quarter was horrific. The second was up-and-down. The third and fourth were remarkable.<br><br>The Sixers win on Christmas Day thanks to utter dominance from both Joel Embiid and James Harden. <br><br>They are 20-12 and have won eight straight games.

PrezπŸ’Š @PresidentEmbiid

SIXERS WIN 8 IN A ROW! <a href="https://t.co/9Q7uSvOlik">pic.twitter.com/9Q7uSvOlik</a>

Sean Barnard @Sean_Barnard1

I get the Sixers still have a ways to go to prove themselves as true contenders but BY FAR the biggest takeaway from the winning streak has been James Harden and Joel Embiid flourishing on the court together<br><br>The team is starting to take shape

Sunday's Christmas matinee did not start the way Philly hoped, as the Knicks got off to a red-hot start and led by as many as 14 points in the first half. Embiid sleepwalked through a quiet first quarter before finally turning it on late in the second, scoring seven points in the final two minutes, nine seconds to help the Sixers pull within three at the break.

Pat Egan @Pat_Egan

Joel Embiid in the post game presser gonna be like… <a href="https://t.co/ht2JPbCAHv">pic.twitter.com/ht2JPbCAHv</a>

The margin closed to one by the end of the third quarter, with Harden taking on a starring role thanks to a series of jaw-dropping threes. His 29 points were his most in more than two months, while his five threes tied a season high.

Kyle Neubeck @KyleNeubeck

Sixers' defense has been disgusting today but Embiid and Harden have been about as good as they can possibly play on offense for last quarter and a half

π™π™–π™‘π™ π™žπ™£' π™‰π˜½π˜Ό @_Talkin_NBA

Most career threes made on Christmas Day:<br><br>1. James Harden (31)*<br>2. LeBron James (28)<br><br>*Made 5 threes vs. the Knicks<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NBAXmas?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#NBAXmas</a> <a href="https://t.co/zj6wEQDXe1">pic.twitter.com/zj6wEQDXe1</a>

Daniel Olinger @dan_olinger

Basketball is full of such cool chain reactions. Harden started killing the Knicks for switching bigs on him or not showing at the level with tons of threes, Knicks counter by sending 2 to harden off ball screens, Sixers respond by hammering them with Georges Niang pick and pops.

Dreadful over the first three quarters, the Philadelphia defense finally locked in during the fourth, limiting the Knicks to just 16 points.

New York has dropped three straight since its own eight-game winning streak. The Knicks are now just 0.5 games from dropping back into the play-in picture.

The Sixers (20-12) would be the East's No. 5 seed if the season ended today.