By Eurohoops team / email@example.com
Joel Embiid returned to the court for the Philadelphia 76ers but that wasn’t enough against the motivated Atlanta Hawks who got a convincing 128-124 road win in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semis.
Young banked in 25 points already by halftime, propelling the Hawks to a 20-point margin (74-54). He finished with 35 (plus ten assists) while getting some help from Bogdan Bogdanovic (5-12 from deep) and John Collins with 21 points each. Clint Capela and Danilo Gallinari had 11 and nine points respectively.
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Embiid with 39 points for Philly tried to give his team a fighting chance but Atlanta’s defensive effort was rather remarkable throughout the game and they didn’t allow the hosts to cut the gap to single digits until the end when it was too late for any upset.
They did have a chance at it, however, making it a one-possession game (121-118) in the final minute but a clear-path foul which gave the Hawks two easy points followed by an alley-oop from Trae Young to John Collins, as well as Bogdanovic’s two free throws, sealed the deal.
Seth Curry scored 21 and Tobias Harris 20 for the Sixers while Ben Simmons had 17 points and ten assists. Furkan Korkmaz logged seven points.
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