Joel Embiid on Jared Dudley: “He’s a Nobody”
The battle between the Philadelphia 76ers and the Brooklyn Nets got heated on Saturday as the Sixers barely came away with a victory to advance to 3-1. Although the Sixers' last-minute win was impressive, that wasn't the major story of the afternoon. A scrap that broke out between the Sixers and the Nets caused by Brooklyn's own Jared Dudley was what caused Philly to flip the switch and start forming their comeback.
The situation all started when Embiid laid a questionable block on Brooklyn's Jarrett Allen. It seemed as though Embiid got all ball on the play; he was still whistled for the foul. That's when Dudley, who was playing aggressively all game decided to run up to Embiid to issue a shove. As expected, both sides ended up getting involved in the scuffle, which led to Dudley's ejection, along with Jimmy Butler's due to his decision to retaliate immediately to the initial shove.
While Embiid stood away from the pile with his hands up to avoid any punishment for himself, he still got called for a flagrant one foul from the initial block. Although he didn't retaliate to Dudley's push, Embiid still felt the need to call him out during his postgame interview on the court.
"He's a nobody," Embiid stated while following up with saying he is too valuable to the Sixers. Therefore, he didn't feel the need to defend himself in that situation. Embiid was smart to stay out of the scuffle since he avoided an ejection, but in the end, Dudley still won as Butler got tossed, and the foul would still stand.
It seems as though Embiid and the Sixers realized the Nets gameplan with Dudley. It was clear the veteran was baiting Philly all game long, and Butler eventually took the bait and paid the price for it. Fortunately, the Sixers were able to pull off the win without Jimmy Butler, but the entire situation was still a close call. Now, we wait to see if the NBA takes action against Butler and Dudley with a fine, and/or a suspension before Game 5.
Follow Justin on Twitter: @JGrasso_