After losing 120-85 to Philadelphia Miami in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference semifinals on Wednesday (AEST), Sixers star Joel Mbid had a game he would like to forget after posting the worst plus / minus score of his playoff career.
MBD scored 17 points for fourth-seeded Philadelphia, with 14 from James Harden and 12 from Tobias Harris.
The 76ers went down to 15 in the fourth quarter, then dropped 12 points in a row to open the period.
Live updates: Galen’s campaign was shaken by the late twist
Read more: The Ultimate Guide: When Galen vs. Terezivsky?
Read more: Galen’s candid hint at the next step ahead of the title fight
“Tonight, we weren’t focused enough,” MBD said.
For MBD, who signed a four-year $ 281 million Super Max deal last year, a plus / minus score of -29 was the worst in his NBA playoff career.
Focus on net change of plus-minus status scores when a given player is either on or off the court, which means that the presence of MBID on the court results in the Miami Sixers surpassing 29 points.
Embiid is working with a torn ligament in his thumb, an orbital fracture, and stopping a recent injury fight.
Although injuries have affected the Philadelphia center, Wednesday’s lazy time comes when he was knocked out of the MVP award, with Denver giant Nikola Jokic claiming his second prize.
Social media was just as ruthless, with several media identities targeting the MBDs and Sixers for Wednesday’s crucial defeat.
Meanwhile, NBA legend and former MVP Charles Berkeley suggested that the MBP was not in the right head position regarding the MVP decision.
“Joel MBD is so confused in my opinion by this MVP thing. He’s not there tonight,” Berkeley said.
It was a tough night for the Sixers, especially for MBD – their best player, already wearing a mask to protect his face fractures and dealing with a significant finger injury.
Embid trembled in the first quarter when he tried to dive into a few baseline seats while trying to save a loose ball. After a while he doubled over, squeezing her back.
He remained in the game despite that fear.
He remained in the game even after the next fear, which was much worse.
It comes in the middle of the second quarter, when Miami’s Dwayne Dedman misses a shot and catches the MBD rebound. Deadman, flailing for the ball, approached it – and pushed it back into the embedded mask-covered face.
“Pretty painful,” said MBD.
Embed lost the ball and went down in obvious discomfort, covering his face with both hands. Oladipo picked up the ball and scored 42-31, but the MBD Riding was much more important to the 76ers than losing two points. The MBD was down for a few moments before returning to the Philadelphia bench and going to the doctors.
“He’s tough,” Rivers said. “I think he knew in that look that something was going to happen to him when he got hit in the face. It was going to happen. … He got up and said, ‘After a while, he’s fine.’
It was the kind of night for the hits, who – even if not everyone rubbed their shoulders – were feeling pretty good about their playoff prospects again.
Jimmy Butler scored 23 points, Max Strauss added 19 points and 10 rebounds, and the Hit Eastern Conference final kicked away one win away from the trip.
The 35-point winning margin is the biggest match of this year’s playoffs so far – Philadelphia beat Toronto by 35 points in that first-round matchup series-clincher – and the second-largest match in post-hit season history.
“They were more physical,” said 76ers coach Doc Reverse. “We didn’t run anything. We didn’t run our stuff very well. We played at snail’s pace … What they did tonight was harder and better. Their stuff was better, their strength was better.”
To get a daily dose of the best breaking news and exclusive content from the Wide World of Sports, subscribe to our newsletter Click here!