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Knicks-76ers: Kelly Oubre Jr. doesn’t think Joel Embiid’s flagrant foul was dirty, says ‘this ain’t WWE’

Knicks-76ers: Kelly Oubre Jr. doesn't think Joel Embiid's flagrant foul was dirty, says 'this ain't WWE'

Embiid grabbed the legs of Knicks center Mitchell Robinson in Philadelphia’s Game 3 win

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The opening-round matchup between the New York Knicks and Philadelphia 76ers has a strong argument for the most entertaining series of the NBA playoffs thus far. Between the Knicks’ incredible Game 2 comeback, Joel Embiid dropping 50 points in Game 3, and all of the rugged physicality along the way, we’ve seen pretty much everything — and we haven’t even gotten to the fourth game yet.

Much of the discussion entering Sunday’s matchup revolves around Embiid’s Game 3 flagrant foul in which he grabbed the legs of an airborne Mitchell Robinson. Knicks guard Donte DiVincenzo called the play “dirty,” while New York head coach Tom Thibodeau felt Embiid had multiple questionable plays throughout the game. A social media uproar insisted that Embiid deserved an ejection, and possible suspension, for the act.

Coming to Embiid’s defense, however, was teammate Kelly Oubre Jr., who spoke with the media on Saturday. Oubre doesn’t feel that the foul was as big of a deal as people are making it, saying that it’s all part of the ebb and flow of a physical series.

“At the end of the day, I don’t think it’s dirty,” Oubre said on Saturday. “Jo has to protect himself. But at the end of the day, I’m not gonna comment on what they’re commenting on because at the end of the day, they’re gonna hit, and then we hit back, then they cry, and then vice versa or whatever the case may be.

“It’s like, let’s just hoop, let’s go out there and play hard. Nobody finna fight, — this ain’t WWE. At the end of the day, stand on the stuff that y’all say, so we’ll see tomorrow how they react.”

We’ll see, indeed.

Recovering from a knee injury that kept him out for a large chunk of the season and now dealing with a case of Bell’s palsy, Embiid has averaged 38 points, nine rebounds and five assists per game this series. He did much of his damage from the perimeter during his 50-point outburst on Thursday, as the Knicks continue to try to push him off his spots in the post.

The 76ers will be as close to “must win” mode as possible on Sunday, hoping to tie up the series and avoid a 3-1 series deficit heading back to New York.

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