BOSTON – Kyrie Irving hit a clutch shot to delay the end of the game and then finished it with two more big shots in overtime to the lead the Boston Celtics to an overtime 121-114 win over the Philadelphia 76ers on Christmas Day.
Irving first connected on a 13-footer to extended the game, also hit back-to-back 3-pointers, including a 30-foot running pull-up jumper, finished with 40 points to go with 10 rebounds, as the Celtics (20-13) came back from a five-point deficit to win the game.
According to ESPN Stats and Information, Irving has now become the 4th active NBA player with a 40-point game on Christmas Day.
The All-Star point guard joins Dwyane Wade, Kevin Durant and James Harden as players to accomplish the achievement.
After the game, Irving spoke about his rare December 25 performance and the build-up to the contest.
“Just competition at its highest. I love going against the best.
“It’s not too often you get to do that in the regular season, especially on a holiday like Christmas.
“I got to open presents with my family this morning then come into work. It was great.”
Irving was well supported on the night by Jayson Tatum and Marcus Morris who both scored 23 apiece for Boston. Tatum also grabbed 10 rebounds.
Joel Embiid paced the Philadelphia 76ers with 34 points and 16 rebounds.
Supporting him were Jimmy Butler with 24 points, JJ Redick with 17 points and Ben Simmons with 11 points, 14 rebounds and eight assists.