Marcus Smart is a master in the dark arts of the grift. It’s a sound strategy on his part because officials oftentimes fall for it, but earlier this week, it got him in some hot water when he accused Joel Embiid of flailing on the floor. No, he didn’t get in trouble, but Embiid straight up could not believe that Marcus Smart, of all people, would make that accusation.
Joel Embiid, on Marcus Smart calling him a flopper: "Marcus Smart just told me that I flail a lot? Come on. I'm sure he knows himself and he knows his game. You know he does a lot of that."
— Derek Bodner (@DerekBodnerNBA) January 21, 2021
The two sides faced off again on Friday night in the City of Brotherly Love, and in the first quarter of the game, Smart tried to get back at Embiid by embellishing a little contact in a big, big way. It did not work, but Embiid seemed to remember Smart’s accusation, as he took a half-second before pushing the ball up the floor to acknowledge what happened.
Then, in one of the funniest moments of the season, the Celtics called a timeout and the two met up at midcourt, wrapping their arms around one another and talking things through.
Joel Embiid and Marcus Smart rekindle after a little dust-up. Mutual respect! pic.twitter.com/EpyLCBmk1C
— Jackson Frank (@jackfrank_jjf) January 23, 2021
Listen, I watch a lot of sports, and I can safely say I have never seen two basketball players have this sort of very pleasant, very cordial conversation after one guy accused the other guy of flopping, then the other guy said he’s being a hypocrite, and then when they played again two days later, the guy who made the accusation flops this blatantly in the first quarter of a game. Yes that is a hyper-specific scenario, but hey, at least Embiid and Smart made it come to fruition and it was very funny.