McCollum makes 11 3s, scores 42, Pelicans beat 76ers 127-116

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — CJ McCollum scored 42 points, making a career-high 11 3-pointers, and Zion Williamson added 36 to power the New Orleans Pelicans to a 127-116 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers on Friday night.

McCollum nailed 3-pointers on three consecutive possessions in a 42-second span of the second quarter, giving the Pelicans a 56-40 lead. McCollum finished the half 7 of 11 from long range and 11 of 16 for the game.

The Pelicans were 10 of 17 from distance in taking a 67-60 halftime lead and finished the game 15 of 31 behind the arc.

Williamson scored seven of the Pelicans’ first 10 points in the final quarter as New Orleans pushed a 99-91 lead to 119-107 with 5:03 left. McCollum capped a 7-2 run with a 3-pointer from the right wing.

McCollum’s 11th 3-pointer 2:37 later gave New Orleans a 124-110 lead. McCollum tied a franchise record for most 3-pointers in a half, joining Jonas Valanciunas, Ryan Anderson and Peja Stojakovic.

Joel Embiid finished with 37 points on 14-for-22 shooting. He scored 15 of Philadelphia’s first 24 points and had 20 first-half points on 8-of-9 shooting.

James Harden added 20 points.

The Pelicans forced 13 turnovers in the first half and turned those into 25 points.

TIP-INS

76ers: G Tyrese Maxey, the 76ers’ second-leading scorer (22.9), returned after missing 18 games with a left foot fracture, scoring nine points in 19 minutes. “I always think ball-handling is the toughest part of coming back,” coach Doc Rivers said. “You just can’t practice the speed that you play with. We just want him to be aggressive and just not overthink the game.” … Philadelphia has lost two straight after winning eight consecutive games. … The Sixers entered the game second in the NBA in scoring defense (108.0).

Pelicans: F Brandon Ingram (averaging 20.8 points and 5.1 rebounds in 15 games) missed his 16th consecutive game with a left toe injury. He said Thursday his recovery has been up and down. “Whenever I feel 100%, I’ll give it a go,” Ingram said. “But it’s hard to say right now.” … F Larry Nance sat out with neck spasms. … The Pelicans have gone 12-4 in the last month, sandwiching a four-game losing streak with separate winning streaks of seven and five games.

UP NEXT

76ers: Close a four-game road trip on Saturday at Oklahoma City.

Pelicans: At Memphis on Saturday.

The Associated Press