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76ers aim to continue success after slumping Hawks

The Philadelphia 76ers have fashioned their first winning streak of the season. Now they will seek their first home victory when the slumping Atlanta Hawks visit the Wells Fargo Center on Wednesday.

The Sixers, who beat the Houston Rockets 115-107 on the road Monday to improve to 3-4, also held on for a 112-110 victory in Dallas on Saturday night, the first time they have won in those two cities in the same season since 2000-01.

They also ended an eight-game slide in Houston, and won back-to-back games for the first time since March 17 and 19, when they beat Dallas and Boston.

They are, however, 0-2 at home this season, falling to Boston and Houston despite holding second-half leads.

Rookie guard/forward Ben Simmons generated 24 points, nine assists and seven rebounds to lead seven players in double figures in Monday's rematch with the Rockets. Center Joel Embiid finished with 22 points, nine boards and five assists.

Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot and Dario Saric added season highs of 17 and 14 points, respectively, but the Sixers committed 21 turnovers and saw the Rockets cut a 14-point third-quarter deficit to one with 3:06 left in the game.

Consecutive baskets by Embiid and Simmons enabled Philadelphia to push the lead to five, and the Sixers held on.

"We just learned our lesson (from the earlier game against the Rockets), and did a better job," Embiid told NBC Sports Philadelphia.

Coach Brett Brown believes, however, there is still room for improvement.

"You walk out of the building certainly not satisfied," he told Philly.com. "I think the defense is what ended up getting us the win. We are always mindful of how can we execute well. We didn't do that tonight."

The 76ers made a bold decision about their future on Tuesday when they passed on picking up center Jahlil Okafor's fourth-year option. The third overall pick of the 2015 NBA draft has fallen out of favor and has seen action in just one game this season.

The club's failure to pick up the option worth $6.3 million will make Okafor an unrestricted free agent after the season. Philadelphia has been trying to trade Okafor.

The 76ers announced that they picked up the third-year options of Simmons, Saric and Luwawu-Cabarrot. Philadelphia also picked up the fourth-year option of forward Justin Anderson.

Meanwhile, the Hawks fell 115-107 to Milwaukee on Sunday, their sixth straight loss, and own the Eastern Conference's worst record at 1-6.

"I think our guys are competing," coach Mike Budenholzer told Fox Sports Southeast. "I like the way they're playing for the most part, the way they're competing."

Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 33 points and Khris Middleton had 27 for the Bucks, who shot 54.3 percent against an Atlanta defense that allows 107.6 points a game, third-most in the league.

Hawks guard Dennis Schroder countered with 21 points and is averaging 22.2 a game.

Atlanta, however, has been without center Miles Plumlee (strained right quadriceps) the entire season, and guard DeAndre' Bembry (broken right wrist) for all but one game. Forward Ersan Ilyasova (bone bruise, knee) is also expected to miss his second straight game Wednesday.

Philadelphia has been without guard Markelle Fultz, the top overall pick in this year's draft, because of a shoulder injury. He has missed the last three games, and the team announced Sunday he will be out indefinitely.

Center/forward Richaun Holmes has yet to play this season because of a broken left wrist, but he told Philly.com he hopes to return Friday against the Indiana Pacers. Guard J.J. Redick has also missed the last two games with back tightness.

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