Joel Embiid didn’t turn his Philadelphia 76ers’ matchup with the shorthanded Utah Jazz into another torture chamber of interior-scoring mastery, but he still left his mark on his squad’s 107-86 victory.
Just as he left a mark on the ball when Jazz rookie Donovan Mitchell tried to score past the Philly center and his considerable dimensions.
Late in the fourth quarter, a doomed drive resulted in an Embiid block and Mitchell’s body sliding across the floor.
Embiid then, uh, complimented the rookie on a good effort, causing him to retaliate with a shove to Embiid’s back.
Either Mitchell is secretly Superman or the 76ers center flopped, because he went flying, causing hopeful Philly fans to hold their collective breath and garnering a technical foul for Mitchell, which resulted in a jubilant Embiid celebration that included a Gladiator-style “Are you not entertained?!”
Embiid then cemented his status as the NBA’s biggest troll—literally and figuratively—by admitting to baiting Mitchell into his T.
Embiid on the Donovan Mitchell technical:
“I blocked his shot and I said something to him, and then he just got up and kind of fake shoved me and I flopped. Then he got a technical for it.”
— Derek Bodner (@DerekBodnerNBA) November 21, 2017
If you’re worried the giant will face consequences for his actions in the form of a fine, don’t worry, Philly’s got his back.
— Gareth Adamson (@FarstFingers) November 21, 2017
Embiid finished the victory with 15 points, 11 rebounds, three assists, and two blocks while playing on a sore knee.
“The whole game I thought I was kind of flat,” Embiid said. “I was kind of going through the motions. I needed that, getting the crowd going. … It was all fun after the game. [Mitchell and I] shook hands. It was just about having fun.”
“The young kid in me kind of showed,” Mitchell said. “Inexperience right there in that moment, because I think we were down (13) and we ended up losing by 21.”