Embiid, who wears a strong mask, is back to lift the 76ers to victory in the 3rd game as the Mavericks eventually knock out the Suns jinx

After recovering from an orbital injury and a torn ligament, the 28-year-old dropped the protocol just before the Philadelphia 76ers went through a crucial Game 3 and Miami Heat clash in the Eastern Conference semifinals.

What was needed was a champion hat, Embiid scored 18 points to help the 76ers ’playoff dream continue with a 99-79 victory at the Wells Fargo Center.

Adding to the 11 high rebounds and support, Embiid’s efforts helped the 76ers skip the fourth round to reduce their chances of heating to 2-1 in the top seven in the top seven.

Tyrese Maxey led the 76ers’ goal along with Danny Green with 21 points, which should be given to his team’s MVP representative – Embiid wears No. 21.

“I was very happy to see 21 [jersey] locked in a locker room, “Maxey told reporters.

“He’s a soldier. A big finger, a mask, a jerk, a broken face – it makes him look really ugly now – and he’s a brave man, and an MVP for a reason.

“The care he demands is so great for us, it’s just a testament to his will and determination to succeed.”


The return of the Cameroonians marked the end of a speedy recovery, having just been transitioned from ‘outside’ to ‘suspicious’ by the 76ers on Friday morning.

Following the defeat of Game 2 on Wednesday, 76ers coach Doc Rivers said Embiid had “many steps to go through” before taking any part in Game 3.

“It was difficult,” Embiid admitted. “Basically because of the confusion and dealing with a lot of symptoms, but I’m glad it went away and I’m glad I’m back.”

The return of Embiid confirmed a painful night for Jimmy Butler of Miami Heat, who said earlier in the week that he wanted to see the 76ers star return to face his MVP nomination.

Butler’s demands were met and he struggled with his old team by 33 points, adding nine rebounds and two assistants, but then led to a complete Heat error. Tyler Herro was second in the team with 14 points, none of the two.

The heat will be until Sunday to resolve their problems before returning to the Wells Fargo Center for Game 4.

76ers' Tobias Harris goes to shoot Jimmy Butler.

“You add Joel to every team; the game, the scout report, changes a lot,” Butler said. “It has been the case throughout his career.

“That’s not why we won the game – we didn’t come back, we turned the ball over, we didn’t stop, we made mistakes, there was a lot that happened – but it’s a big part of that.”

fighting again

Meanwhile in the western semifinals, the Dallas Mavericks ended an 11-game losing streak for the Phoenix Suns to put themselves back on the list with a 103-94 victory.

Maverick’s strong teams Jalen Brunson and Luke Doncic impressed on points 28 and 26 respectively, Doncic missed three doubles with 13 rebounds and nine assistants as they continued the race.

The Slovenian is the seventh player in NBA history to have approximately 35 mapoints, 10 rebounds and five assists in the first three games of the series, according to ESPN Stats and Info.

Donic also played three games.

“Strong man, I think the power was crazy,” Doncic said. “This crowd makes us go, the crowd was amazed at the whole game.

“The strength and killing that we were good at, we were confident, and that’s what we have to play every game.

“We hope he wins four and then it is not over,” Doncic said.

After struggling to catch Chris Paul of the Suns green in Game 2, Mavericks’ fierce defensive game disrupted the 37-year-old’s birthday, forcing Paul to turn seven by half.

“It looked like all seven of them were coming back,” Paul said. “If I don’t turn the ball around like that I feel like I’m playing another game.”

Jae Crowder’s 19 points led to a goalless draw for the Suns, who will have a chance to close the gap on Phoenix if they return with a win to make it 3-1 on Sunday in Game 4.


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