Joel Embiid minced no words on LeBron’s flagrant foul call tonight despite the Sixers bagging the game with a Tobias Harris shot.
The Sixers and the Lakers played out one of the most exciting games of the season thus far tonight. The Sixers took the lead early in the game and had it for nearly the entire length. But they ceded it at the worst possible time – with 11 seconds remaining in the game.
However, Tobias Harris got them out of jail with a clutch play to take a fadeaway 2-pointer that swished. This left the Lakers in their own backcourt with 2.4 seconds remaining and no timeouts left. The Sixers held on for a famous win that should not have been as close as it went.
With 5:44 left in the 3rd quarter, Embiid expertly spun around Marc Gasol and went up for a dunk. He was shoved with both hands by LeBron James, who received a flagrant foul call for his troubles.
Joel Embiid wanted LeBron James ejected for dangerous play
Embiid gave a candid post-game presser. He emphasized how he wasn’t able to play to his strengths in the 4th due to his back issues. Embiid said these issues stem from the hard foul James committed on him, stating that James deserved to be ejected for dangerous play on that occasion:
“You look at it, that’s a very dangerous play, and I guarantee if it was me I would have probably been ejected from the game.”
On first look, the foul did look bad. However, replays showed that James did not apply force while fouling Embiid. The thing about NBA rules though, is that there is little room for interpretation in this specific scenario. The rulebook clearly states that an intentional bump on a player in the air is tantamount to ejection.
Joel Embiid said he believed LeBron James should’ve received a flagrant 2 for his foul that caused Embiid to fall and land very hard on his back.
— Tim Bontemps (@TimBontemps) January 28, 2021
Realistically speaking, however, no reffing crew would have liked to face the heat that would’ve come their way for ejecting LeBron James on a night when he was on a hot shooting streak. LeBron finished with figures of 34/6/6 on 12-of-22 shooting for the night.