Basketball: Joel Embiid drops 70 points for Sixers, Karl-Anthony Towns nets 62 for Timberwolves on historic NBA scoring day

Joel Embiid celebrates another bucket.
Joel Embiid celebrates another bucket. Photo credit: Getty Images

Joel Embiid has scored a career-high and franchise-record 70 points to go along with 18 rebounds, as hosts Philadelphia 76ers defeated San Antonio Spurs 133-123.

The reigning Most Valuable Player became the third player in Philadelphia franchise history to produce at least 60 points in a game, joining Wilt Chamberlain (three occasions) and Allen Iverson.

Embiid surpassed Chamberlain's previous franchise mark of 68 points, set on December 16, 1967, against Chicago Bulls.

Embiid shot 24/41 from the field, 1/2 from 3-point range and 21/23 from the free-throw line.

Across the country in Minnesota, Karl-Anthony Towns poured in 62 points for the Timberwolves in a losing effort against Charlotte Hornets - setting a new franchise record.

Towns had 44 points at halftime, breaking Lakers legend Kobe Bryant's record for points at the interval (43).

He made 21/35 field goals, including 10 three-pointers, adding eight rebounds in just under 38 minutes in the 128-125 loss.

Embiid and Towns' efforts come on the anniversary of Bryant's famous 81-point game against Toronto Raptors in 2006.

Karl Anthony-Towns en route to 62 points.
Karl Anthony-Towns en route to 62 points. Photo credit: Getty Images

Tyrese Maxey added 18 points and eight assists, and Tobias Harris had 14 points and six assists for the Sixers, who won their sixth in a row.

The short-handed Sixers were severely depleted without Patrick Beverley, De'Anthony Melton, Marcus Morris Sr, Jaden Springer, Robert Covington and Mo Bamba.

Prized No.1 overall pick Victor Wembanyama scored 33 points for the Spurs. Devin Vassell added 22, Jeremy Sochan contributed 14, Doug McDermott had 13, and Julian Champagnie and Tre Jones each finished with 12.

The Sixers led 110-91 with 10m left, when Maxey tossed an alley-oop pass to Kenyon Martin Jr, who finished with a thunderous dunk.

McDermott banked in a three-pointer with 8m 26s remaining to bring the Spurs within 116-104.

With the fans on their feet, Embiid knocked down an 18-foot jump shot for his 65th point with 4m 51s left for a 124-109 lead.

The Spurs managed to close within 127-118, when Vassell scored with 2m 37s left. Kelly Oubre Jr responded with a layup and Embiid scored the next four points to seal the victory.

After the Sixers pulled out to a 55-47 lead, Champagnie responded with a four-point play with 4m 08s left in the second quarter.

Embiid tipped in his own miss with 1m 14s remaining an added a 10-footer in the final seconds for a slim 62-58 halftime lead.

Embiid had 24 points in the first quarter alone, and finished the half with 34 and 10 rebounds. It marked the second time this season that Embiid at least 30 points and 10 rebounds in a half.

Wembanyama was also effective with 18 points in only 14 minutes.

When Embiid scored in the lane for a 72-66 lead with 9m 20s remaining in the third, he had already reached the 40-point mark.

Wembanyama stayed aggressive, was fouled on a three-pointer with 7:32 left and made 2 of 3 free throws to close within 77-70.

Embiid's three-point play with 4m 58s remaining gave him 50 and a 92-78 Sixers advantage.