CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Jimmy Butler knocked down a 3-pointer as time expired in overtime, and the Philadelphia 76ers overcame a career-high 60 points from Kemba Walker to beat the Charlotte Hornets 122-119 on Saturday night.
Butler’s play in the final seconds was the difference.
He blocked Walker’s shot and saved the ball to a teammate with 15 seconds left, setting the stage for his winning jumper from the top of the key over Dwayne Bacon.
Joel Embiid finished with 33 points and 11 rebounds and Ben Simmons had 23 points, 11 rebounds and nine assists as the 76ers defeated the Hornets for the third time this season. Butler had 15 points in his third game with his new team.
Walker’s 60 points were the most in the NBA this season, topping Klay Thompson’s 52 against Chicago on Oct. 29.
Walker finished 21 of 34 from the field and had six 3-pointers. He made all 12 foul shots and had seven rebounds and four assists.
Walker had 37 and 30 points in his previous two games against the 76ers, but only shot a combined 33 per cent. This time he was making everything, including banking in a 3-pointer to give the Hornets the lead with 44 seconds left in regulation. Walker held up his palms after the ball went it, similar to that famous gesture by Hornets owner Michael Jordan many years ago with the Bulls.
Embiid has feasted on the Hornets this season, with 42 points and 18 rebounds and 27 points and 15 rebounds in his previous two games.
JJ Redick finished with 23 points for Philadelphia, including two key jumpers in overtime.
76ers: Simmons threw an alley-oop pass to a breaking Butler from three-quarters court.
Hornets: Larry Johnson, Alonzo Mourning, Glen Rice, Muggsy Bogues and Dell Curry were among those on hand as Charlotte celebrated its recently selected 30th anniversary team. … Nic Batum, who has struggled of late, was booed by the home crowd after an airball in the third quarter. He didn’t score in the game and only played two minutes in the second half. … James Borrego picked up his first technical foul as Hornets coach. … Marvin Williams and Cody Zeller fouled out.
76ers: Host the Phoenix Suns on Monday night.
Hornets: Host the Boston Celtics on Monday night.