"Listen, we have so many female reporters now that know the game and they cover the game", James said. That's no knock on them, and everybody seemed to understand it as they let their pulses settle back to their normal resting rates after a 132-130 win that almost ended a tenth of a second too late.
"If you know the game, everyone is accepting of that", the Cleveland Cavaliers star and three-time National Basketball Association champion told reporters on Thursday, according to ClutchPoints' reporter Nikki Goel.
"This was big, beating a team like that without an All-Star", Simmons said. A few weeks earlier, the Raptors were up 15 midway through the third quarter and ended up losing by three. He struggled with eight turnovers and nine points with 10 assists on 3-of-10 shooting. "He's the best player in the league and he does that every night".
LeBron James followed a big time slam-dunk with a stare down of Philadelphia 76ers big man Ersan Ilyasova.
If Philadelphia wins, the Sixers will overtake Cleveland for the East's No. 3 seed by a half-game and even the season series at 2-2. It is clear, therefore than a win in tonight's matchup provides an open path to the conference finals, making this one of, if not the most important game of the season for both franchises.
Saturday (AEDT) was the last time the two teams will meet unless they match up in the playoffs.
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Despite being shorthanded, one thing is for sure - the Sixers won't be entering the game with a mindset of an underdog. With the athletes Toronto has and the physical defense that is enforced though, they are going to be the most challenging team to face before the NBA Finals.
That's not to say that they should be scared.
Coach Lue elected to give Cedi Osman a starting nod in Thursday night's win over the Washington Wizards. A first-round victory for the battered Celtics would be anything but guaranteed. The Sixers have been tight-lipped on Embiid's progress other than to guess at a two-to-four week recovery. "You see them trending in a very competitive winning way". Even then, though, the Bucks and Giannis Antetokounmpo loom as another potential first-round opponent.
LeBron will probably sign with a team closer to being a contender this offseason.
"I don't have a quit bone in me, so if I'm on the floor I've got to try to make plays happen no matter what the score is", he said.
On Friday, they did just enough.