Is there anything more heartbreaking than a Game 7 loss on a game-winning, buzzer-beating shot?
Yes. It’s watching Joel Embiid cry after it.
The 76ers star couldn’t help but shed some tears following the Sixers’ defeat at the hands of Kawhi Leonard and the Raptors on Sunday in Toronto.
The moment was caught on camera.
Embiid’s girlfriend, model Anne De Paula, was seen comforting him as he made his way toward the locker room.
And the Raptors’ Marc Gasol opted to embrace Embiid on the court before going to celebrate with his teammates.
Embiid finished with 21 points in 45 minutes, but it wasn’t enough to stop Leonard.
His shot bounced on the rim four times before eventually falling in, and pandemonium broke out at Scotiabank Arena.
Leading into Game 7, it was rumored that Brett Brown was coaching for his job. A loss might be devastating for the man who shepherded the Sixers through The Process and a 10-win season all the way to the cusp of the conference finals.
But Brown had nothing but kind words about his stars and his team — particularly when it came to discussing Embiid’s reaction to the loss.
“It’s going to be a life memory, that, as painful as it feels now, it’ll help him … it’ll help shape his career, it’ll help give him greater clarity about what this time of the year represents,” he said. “ … It’s hard, it’s hard to be the last man standing. To see him have the emotion that he has … it is painful for all of us … he’ll look in the rearview mirror and remember this.”
Fans on social media noted that Brown’s job status was tenuous.
But … do fans want him back?
How do you know the stakes were high for Game 7? Drake wasn’t even there.
The noted Raptor fan and Toronto native watched the game not in his usual courtside seat but away from the arena. And once he posted on Instagram at the end of the game, it was clear why: He was wearing Sixers gear.
Yes, Drake is so aware of the Drake curse that he thought he’d use his own magic to help the Raptors to a victory.
Whether or not Leonard’s shot falling in was part of the Drake curse pull, it worked.
» RAPTORS 92, SIXERS 90: Raptors’ Kawhi Leonard bounces Sixers out of playoffs, into uncertain offseason
» READ MORE: Observations from the Sixers’ loss