Joel Embiid rips 76ers game plan after late collapse vs. Bucks: Next time ‘match’ my minutes with Giannis’

When Joel Embiid checked out of the third quarter game between the Philadelphia 76ers and Milwaukee Bucks on Tuesday night, his team led 82-72 with 3:37 left in the period. It was mostly a back and forth game all night, but the Sixers came out with a double digit lead and were in a prime position to secure the win.

But then two-time league MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo rattled the next 15 points for the Bucks to narrow the deficit to 91-87 with 10:36 to go in the fourth quarter. Embiid dove back into play shortly after Giannis’ ridiculous offensive outburst, but by then Milwaukee was already gaining momentum and this game led to final possession. Giannis’ blockade on Embiid’s putback attempt, initially thought to be goaltending, secured the Bucks’ 118-116 comeback win, giving them a one-game lead in the East standings and the tiebreaker over the Sixers. .

After the game, when asked what he thinks went wrong for the Sixers, Embiid pointed to Giannis’ 15-point run and the fact that Philadelphia had no response to slow him down.

‘The game really changed when I got on the couch’ embiid said:† “I didn’t think we did that [a good enough job] at the end of that third quarter, beginning of the fourth. Their best player scored 17 points in a row or whatever that was. I didn’t think we were doing what we were supposed to do. They made that run and they cut the lead, and they got some momentum and it carried over.”

When asked what the Sixers could have done differently to slow down Giannis, Embiid said it didn’t help that he was on the bench during Antetokounmpo’s entire run.

“I mean, I was on the couch the whole time,” Embiid said. “When I was on the floor I really made sure I was always there to help. I thought we weren’t following that strategy, we weren’t building a wall and he had a lot of freedom to just attack and do whatever he wanted “That changed the game. Maybe just match the minutes next time.”

Matching Embiid’s minutes with Antetokounmpo’s is Philadelphia’s best response to delay the reigning Finals MVP, as Doc Rivers’ plan to throw Paul Millsap to Giannis definitely didn’t work. However, if these two teams face each other in the playoffs, I suspect Rivers is executing that plan so that Philly isn’t exploited for its lack of size without Embiid.

Leave a Comment