In Joel Embiid’s postgame interview, following the Philadelphia 76ers’ win over the Toronto Raptors, he spoke about what was said to Nick Nurse.
During the NBA playoffs, it is expected for players to heckle their opponents. It is a high-intensity atmosphere, and it often brings out the best in the players. Most would expect the back and forth to be between the players. But in the 76ers game against the Toronto Raptors, Joel Embiid and Raptors head coach Nick Nurse were caught exchanging words.
When asked about what was said during his post-game interview, Embiid was blunt.
“He’s a great coach,” said Embiid. “Obviously, he’s been able to accomplish [a lot] and always been a big fan. But, I told him, respectfully, I told him to stop bitching about calls.”
Following the Raptor’s Game 1 loss, Nurse expressed his frustrations about several fouls that should have been called, particularly ones against Embiid.
“I thought he threw three or four elbows to the face. He got called for one. I mean, we’re gonna stand in there. We just need, if we’re legal defensively, then we’ve got to have them called, or we don’t have a chance, period. Nobody can guard that guy if they’re just gonna let him run you over time and time again.
Game 2 gave Nurse plenty more to fret over. The 76ers shot 34 free throws compared to the Raptors’ 23.
Nick Nurse’s response to Joel Embiid’s comments
Nurse was asked about Embiid’s comments and he had a different take on what was said.
Nurse also stated how much respect he had for Embiid.
“But a good player, man. I got a lot of respect for him. He’s certainly playing great here. There’s nothing there but us trying to compete against him and him trying to compete against us.”
Both Nurse and Embiid seem to have great admiration for each other. The 76ers will now fly to Toronto for Game 3, with a 2-0 series lead.