'Classless': Injured Joel Embiid at centre of 'disgusting' crowd act

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Seen here, Joel Embiid in obvious discomfort against the Atlanta Hawks in the NBA Playoffs.
Joel Embiid's knee injury caused him discomfort throughout the game. Pic: Getty

Atlanta fans have been called out over a "disgusting" act towards Joel Embiid during the Hawks' Eastern Conference semifinal defeat to the Philadelphia 76ers.

Embiid set aside his injury concerns to lead the Sixers to a convincing 127-11 win that gives them a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven NBA Playoffs series.

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The towering centre - playing with a cartilage tear in his right knee - scored 27 points while adding nine rebounds, eight assists and three blocked shots.

However, he was targeted by fans in a disgraceful moment during the third quarter when his grabbed at his knee after it appeared to buckle underneath him.

Loud cheers could be heard ringing out from the crowd as Embiid clutched at his knee in obvious discomfort.

The unsavoury scenes prompting a wave of backlash from angry fans on social media.

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The Sixers star spoke about his knee after the match, but tried his best to downplay the magnitude of the injury.

"I'm OK," Embiid said. "I'm standing up. I'm walking. I finished the game. So I'm gonna keep getting back up. I'm going to keep fighting. That's been me since I've been playing basketball. ... Whatever happens, get back up and keep it going."

Harris and Simmons solid in Philly win

Tobias Harris had 22 points while Australian Ben Simmons contributed 18, to go with seven assists, to help the 76ers end Atlanta's streak of 13 home wins.

The 76ers, who took the series lead with back-to-back wins, played to their No.1 seeding.

They established a lead of 22 points and kept the advantage in double figures for most of the second half. The Hawks played from behind after their last lead at 11-10.

Trae Young led Atlanta with 28 points, while John Collins and Bogdan Bogdanovic contributed 23 and 10 points respectively.

Game 4 is Monday night in Atlanta.

Pictured here, 76ers teammates Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons share a laugh.
Embiid and Simmons both impressed in the Game 3 win. Pic: Getty

After leading 65-60 early in the third period, Philadelphia took command with an 11-0 run. The 76ers outscored the Hawks 34-19 in the third period.

Simmons had two baskets during the run, including a jam for a 76-60 lead.

"I was just trying to push the pace and get in the lane, stay aggressive and get to the rim, get into a rhythm," Simmons said. "I think I did a good job of that in the second half."

Atlanta couldn't regain the momentum as the 76ers stretched the lead to 20 points, 93-73, late in the period.

Embiid, who faced constant double-teams from Atlanta's defence, made 12 of 16 free throws.

Hawks coach Nate McMillan asked for a strong start that eluded his team in their Game 2 loss. Instead, Philadelphia relied on an unlikely scoring source to grab the early lead.

Furkan Korkmaz, who scored a combined seven points in the first two games of the series, scored 11 points in the opening period while making two threes. He added another three in the fourth for 14 points.

The 76ers stretched the advantage to 11 points in the second period before settling for a 61-56 halftime lead.

with AAP

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