For a moment Saturday night, it seemed like the Celtics’ excitement about Jayson Tatum’s clutch, late-game shot was going to be very short-lived.
After receiving an in-rhythm bounce pass from Marcus Smart, Tatum stepped back and knocked down a go-ahead 3-pointer with 1.3 seconds left in the Philadelphia-Boston contest. Tatum put up three fingers and Al Horford jumped for joy, but the C’s were given a scare when Joel Embiid took the ensuing inbound pass and cashed a 70-foot shot.
The Wells Fargo Center crowd went berserk, as the home fans initially thought the 76ers’ star big man sent the game into overtime with one of the more impressive shots you’ll ever see. But replay clearly showed the basketball still was in Embiid’s hand as the final buzzer sounded.
Asked after the game about coming up short by the narrowest of margins, a somber Embiid provided an answer that makes you feel for the six-time All-Star.
“Unfortunately, story of my life,” Embiid told reporters, per The Athletic’s Rich Hofmann.
Embiid’s sentiment is true on multiple fronts. The 76ers have had some brutal luck in close, high-profile games since he’s been in Philadelphia and the Celtics have had their division rival’s number for years now.
Time will tell if those tides will ever turn. Perhaps this spring, as it’s very easy to see Boston and Philadelphia meeting at some point in the NBA playoffs.