Joel Embiid is never shy, and that’s especially the case after a big win. On Wednesday night in Philadelphia, the Sixers finally got their first win of the year against the Celtics in a 118-115 thriller that, hopefully, offers a preview of what a playoff series between the two could look like.
There was a scuffle between Embiid and Marcus Smart, leading to Smart’s ejection after he shoved Embiid to the ground, in the early third quarter with the Celtics up 11. From there, Embiid took over and, along with the help of 15 fourth-quarter points from Jimmy Butler, propelled the Sixers to the win.
Embiid had a ridiculous 37 points and 22 rebounds in the win, piling up the numbers against the team that’s given him the most trouble of anyone in recent years. Afterwards, Embiid had plenty to say to ESPN’s Cassidy Hubbarth about his performance, first calling himself the best defensive player in the league and then noting he wanted to prove he was the NBA’s most unstoppable force after so much chatter about the Celtics shutting him down in the past.