Every time the Boston Celtics and Philadelphia 76ers face off against one another, it seems like the bad blood between the two teams is amplified little by little. Seeing as how the squads play four times in the regular season and squared off in the playoffs last year, there are a whole lot of opportunities for both sides to find more ways to hate each other.
The latest example of this came on Wednesday night, when Philly hosted Boston and picked up a 118-115 win over their divisional rivals thanks to a monster game from Joel Embiid and some heroics from Jimmy Butler. During the third quarter of action, Marcus Smart was tossed for taking umbrage to a screen by Embiid and shoving the All-Star center.
This, obviously, did not go over well with anyone in the city of Philadelphia, and as it turns out, the NBA wasn’t exactly stoked about it, either. The league announced on Thursday afternoon that Smart received a $50,000 fine.
If $50,000 seems like a serious chunk of change for this, that’s because the fine wasn’t only for shoving Embiid.
“Smart’s fine was also based on his repeated acts of unsportsmanlike conduct during NBA games, including two prior incidents this season which have resulted in fines,” the NBA announced in a release.
Smart brings an undoubted toughness to the Celtics, and he plays the villain role as well as anyone in the league. Still, it’s not a stretch to wonder if this sort of thing happening in the future could lead to a stiffer penalty than just a suspension.