Ben Simmons' Philadelphia 76ers in loss to Toronto Raptors

Ben Simmons' Philadelphia 76ers in loss to Toronto Raptors

Mention of that impressive record saw Nurse acknowledge that the forward appears to move to another level against other contenders as Toronto improved to 21-5 at the top of the Eastern Conference.

In their loss to the Nuggets, the Raptors shot.268 (11-for-41) from 3-point range and were 3-for-22 (.136) from beyond the arc in the first half. "He came in and gave us some tremendous things".

"We leave disappointed", Brown said.

Australian Simmons fell just short of a triple-double with eight points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists and Jimmy Butler had 38 points and 10 rebounds. Valanciunas scored a pair of baskets as Toronto's reserves replied with a 9-0 run, opening a 90-81 advantage at 9:07. "I think there'll be a lot of switching going on, so they all understand the coverages of those guys and what we're doing when they get on him", Nurse said. "Tonight was one of those games where they just had it clicking".

Does he rise to the occasion against the league's best teams? The 76ers committed 11 turnovers in the second quarter.

The Sixers (17-8) will take a four-game winning streak - and eight wins in their past nine - into their game Wednesday night against the Toronto Raptors (19-5) at the Scotiabank Arena.

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Leonard's dunk gave the Raptors a 15-point lead.

The Raptors face the Sixers again on December 22 at Philadelphia. G Malachi Richardson (illness) was inactive. "And there's a newness that the history of what we might or might not have done in Toronto is irrelevant to (Butler); he doesn't care".

Embiid's 23 double-doubles this season are the most by an National Basketball Association player over the first 25 games of a season since Kevin Garnett also had 23 in 2004-05.

LeBron James' off-season defection from the Cleveland Cavaliers to the Los Angeles Lakers in the Western Conference has opened a path for teams in the east.

The game drew several celebrities who attended Tuesday's gala for Giants of Africa, the charity of Raptors president Masai Ujiri. Jonas Valanciunas, limited by foul trouble in the first half, was able to comfortably win the matchup against Joel Embiid in the fourth, delivering 18 points and frequently getting the better of Embiid at both ends of the floor. Former Raptors all-star Chris Bosh, Blue Jays legend Joe Carter, and former Chelsea star Didier Drogba were in attendance as part of the festivities and received a loud ovation.

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