Painful Process: Embiid's woes coming at bad time for 76ers | AP sports

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Embiid finished with 17 points and 12 rebounds in 36 minutes - the most he has played in a game this postseason - as well as a plus-minus of plus-40, the best mark by a player in this season's playoffs.

Ben Simmons seized that moment early, registering eight of his 21 points and five of his six assists in the first quarter, as the Sixers raced out to a 29-21 lead.

Now, Embiid seems to be dealing with another sickness, that apparently isn't related to the other issues from a week ago. The Philadelphia 76ers, having nursed him along since they drafted him in 2014 due to his many injury problems, had finally made a decision to play him heavy minutes this year, and there was open speculation that they might have ridden their prized unicorn straight into the ground. If I got to play 45 minutes and push myself out there, that's what I got to do. He gets shaken around to me too much. But it's Embiid taking the bulk of the beating from fans and media, and coach Brett Brown doesn't think that's right.

To his credit, Embiid took the high road when the Scotiabank Arena crowd antics were raised in his post-game news conference.

Embiid's start was inauspicious, to say the least, as he walked to the free-throw line: An airball on the first free-throw attempt, followed by another airball that came up at least two feet short.

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And then on Thursday night at the Wells Fargo Center, Embiid was a world-destroying super-villain, scoring baskets and collecting fouls inside the paint, draining shots from beyond the three-point line, and punctuating the Sixers' Game 3 win with a mix of blocks, dunks and taunts that sent the Philly fans into bedlam.

"It just happened. A lot of things like that happen". The 25-year-old from Cameroon is a giant man who would not be out of place as a body double for the man-mountain Ser Gregor Clegane on "Game of Thrones".

Jimmy Butler lived up to his Jimmy Buckets nickname.

While we know what day the game will be played, the time will be set on Friday night more than likely.

"Basketball is fun", Embiid said. "So we just got to do the same thing".

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