James Harden wins it for 76ers with 45 points

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Philadelphia 76ers claims victory over host Boston Celtics as James Harden 45 points wins it for visitors.

James Harden tied his career playoff high by scoring 45 points to help the visiting Philadelphia 76ers defeat the Boston Celtics 119-115 in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semi-finals on Monday night.

Harden made 17 of his 30 field-goal attempts, including 7 of 14 from behind the 3-point arc. It was the 10th playoff game in which Harden has scored at least 40 points.

Harden’s 3-pointer with 8.4 seconds to play gave the third-seeded 76ers a 117-115 lead. Jayson Tatum was called for a foul on the ensuing possession, and then Paul Reed capped the scoring by making two free throws with 4.6 seconds left. Philadelphia closed the game with a 12-4 run.

The 76ers played without Joel Embiid, who sustained a sprained LCL in his right knee during Game 3 of Philadelphia’s first-round sweep of Brooklyn.

Embiid led the NBA by averaging 33.1 points per game during the regular season.

Game 2 of the best-of-seven series will be played Wednesday night in Boston.


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