Joel Embiid is quite the troll because he rarely takes things seriously, especially when he's in a good mood. That side of him was on full display against the Brooklyn Nets as the Sixers won a close game 110-102, largely thanks to Embiid's 34 points.
He wasn't the only contributor though, with second-year guard Tyrese Maxey pouring in 25 points of his own. Maxey shot the ball excellently too, managing to make 55% of his field-goal attempts and going 5-8 from 3-point range, an impressive 62%.
Speaking after the game at the press conference, Embiid was caught joking around with Maxey in what could also be interpreted as a dig at Ben Simmons. The duo was laughing to themselves as they prepared to answer the questions and here's a look at what Embiid said.
"You see what happens when you freakin' shoot 3's? Come on man, shoot the 3! You were great... that's how you respond to criticism!"
The Sixers have put a lot of faith into Maxey, especially with Ben Simmons unlikely to ever suit up for them again. He has repaid that faith by developing a three-point shot this season. Maxey went from shooting just 30% on 1.7 attempts a game in his rookie season, to a very respectable 38.1% on 3.4 attempts per game.
This could definitely have also been a slight against Ben Simmons, whose inability and possible refusal to improve his three-point shooting likely lead to the situation he now finds himself in. Embiid has always been one to encourage his teammates but it seems to be working out much better with Maxey than it ever did with Simmons.
Maxey is developing into an excellent starter and has more than doubled all of his stats from his rookie season. He's playing 35 minutes a night while averaging 16.5 points, 3.5 rebounds, and 4.5 assists. He is also really good on the defensive end of the floor, meaning the Sixers might just have found their Simmons replacement in-house.