The Philadelphia 76ers are looking like a lock to move on, as they secured their 112-108 win over the Nets on Saturday night. They will take a 3-1 lead back into Philly on Tuesday, and are likely to advance to the second round for the second consecutive season.
But as we learned in the 2016 playoffs, a 3-1 lead is no guarantee. That year, the Golden State Warriors came storming back from such a deficit against the Thunder, only to give up their own 3-1 series lead to Cleveland in the Finals.
In a postgame presser following the game, Joel Embiid took a shot at the 3-1 collapse the Warriors suffered a few years ago, and could barely get the words out before Jimmy Butler jokingly walked off the set.
For those that remember, the lost 3-1 lead was the tagline of memes and jokes the entire summer, and the Warriors became the laughing stock of the league. So much so, in fact, that they were compelled to pursue KD just weeks later. He joined the Warriors that summer, and their previous woes became history.
Still, that epic collapse is still a lingering demon for that franchise.
Nobody is anticipating anything like that happening this season, an Embiid's comments should not be taken as anything but a joke. But maybe it should serve as a reminder that being up 3-1 to one is no excuse to ease of the gas pedal.