‘Feels like he's unstoppable': Maxey, Wemby, more react to Embiid's 70-point game

‘Feels like he's unstoppable': Maxey, Wemby, more react to Embiid's 70-point game originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

On one hand, Joel Embiid’s Sixers teammates are accustomed to their superstar center conquering whatever coverage he sees.

On the other hand, Monday night wasn’t normal.

Embiid played 36 minutes and 38 seconds in his team's win over the Spurs. He scored a Sixers-record 70 points.

“You were going to stop at 55, but I said 70,” Danuel House Jr. yelled at Embiid across the locker room with a grin. “And what you’d say? You said, '70?!’

“Thank you for taking me for a ride. I’ve never been a part of anything like that before. First time. Exciting.”

Sixers head coach Nick Nurse was also rather confident his basketball journey had never previously involved a 70-point outing.

“I’ll have to check back on some of the British Basketball League records, but I don’t think so,” Nurse said.

The game’s No. 2 scorer was 7-foot-4 Spurs rookie Victor Wembanyama, who posted an impressive 33 points but struggled with foul trouble and the reality that Embiid usually has efficient answers to everything — even 8-foot wingspans.

Wembanyama, Zach Collins, double teams, zone defense … none of it ever stalled Embiid’s progress.

“It would’ve been more fun in a win, of course, but it’s inspiring,” Wembanyama told reporters of his first career matchup with Embiid. “Inspiring, especially defensively.”

Wembanyama turned 20 years old this month and is averaging 20.3 points, 10.0 rebounds and a league-leading 3.2 blocks. In contrast, Embiid didn’t start playing basketball until he was a teenager, missed his first two NBA seasons due to injury, and debuted at 22 years old.

"It's great,” Embiid said of Wembanyama’s comments. “Even though I started playing late, from the time I started playing Kobe (Bryant) was my guy. He's the reason why I started playing basketball. It’s funny because this was on the same (date in 2006) he had 81, and that was my favorite player. When I started, the guys that I was looking up to were doing all this.

“So if he says it's inspiring, I hope that in a couple years — hopefully when I don't have to guard him and I'm out of the league — he’s able to do the same thing and go out and break all these records, and possibly break (Wilt Chamberlain’s) record of 100 points."

For now, Embiid is the big man flummoxing opponents and knocking out records.

“I get to play with him during his prime, during the time that it feels like he’s unstoppable,” Tyrese Maxey said. “I appreciate him, man. He (instills) confidence in me, tells me to go out there and be aggressive every single night. But when he’s making every single shot, you kind of want to give him the ball. He’s been great.”

If you’ve watched any of Embiid's games since mid-November, you’ve seen him score at least 30 points.

And if you were present Monday at Wells Fargo Center, you’ll likely remember for a long time.

“With the history of this franchise, to have that happen tonight is really special,” Nurse said. “The people that were here got to see something really cool tonight, that’s for sure.”