Joel Embiid May 14, 2023; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Celtics head coach Joe Mazzulla talks with Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (21) after game seven of the 2023 NBA playoffs at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

The season came to a flat end for the Philadelphia 76ers on Sunday. They were on the wrong end of a 112-88 final score in Game 7 of their second-round series against the Boston Celtics. Philadelphia’s Joel Embiid, the NBA MVP, is taking a lot of heat for his performance on the court and in a postgame press conference.

Embiid did not have a strong game on Sunday. The same can be said for Philadelphia’s other star, James Harden. Boston’s top two scorers, Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum, both scored more points individually than Harden and Embiid did combined. Tatum, in fact, more than doubled their total.

After the game, Embiid addressed Harden’s contract situation, noting that he has a player option and it will be the job of the front office to bring Harden back to Philadelphia. He made it clear that he wanted it to happen, saying, per Rich Hofmann of The Athletic, “But I still believe that me and him, we got the chance to win.” Embiid then continued.

“But it’s gonna take more than us. We all gotta look at ourselves. I gotta be better and I will be better. That’s what I’m focused on. All of us, we got to come back and find ways to just keep improving and help the team. We can’t win alone, I can’t win alone, me and James, we just can’t win alone. That’s why basketball is played 5-on-5. So, we just need everybody to just trying to keep finding ways to get better. And we’ll be fine.”

Of course, basketball is a 5-on-5 game. And if Harden and Embiid (or even just one of them) had a great game in defeat, the comments would be more valid.

But that wasn’t the case. Embiid and Harden were probably Philadelphia’s worst two starters on Sunday.

With that in mind, Embiid’s postgame comments were not taken well.

[Rich Hofmann]

About Michael Dixon

Michael is a writer and editor for The Comeback Media. He is Bay Area native living in the Indianapolis area. Michael is also a big nerd when it comes to sports history and to a slightly lesser extent, all history. Beyond that, loves tacos, pizza and random Seinfeld quotes.

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