PHILADELPHIA — The Philadelphia 76ers had their season end on Thursday night with a 99-90 loss in Game 6 to the Miami Heat. It was yet another elimination in the semifinals as the Sixers now have to go into another offseason with questions they must answer.
One question still remains with this team, for now, three years running: How could they let Jimmy Butler go?
Butler came into Philadelphia in Game 6 on Thursday and he dropped 32 points with eight rebounds to lead the Heat to the win. That is the guy the Sixers let get away. Thursday really showed why they needed Butler.
“I’m happy for him,” said Joel Embiid. “I won’t sit here and say I didn’t wish he was my teammate. I still don’t know how we let him go. I wish I could’ve gone to battle with him still, but it is what it is. Just gotta keep building and keep tryna reach that goal.”
Butler and Embiid have kept their friendship while Butler went off to Miami in the 2019 offseason, but in three seasons with the Heat, he has carried this team to the NBA finals and now the Eastern Conference finals.
“That’s my guy,” Embiid added. “That’s my brother. It’s tough, but I’m proud of him. He’s playing at an unreal level. He’s something else right now and I’m proud of him for being at this level and carrying them and what he’s been able to do.”
Butler even said that he still wishes he was Embiid’s teammate. It just wasn’t meant to be.
“They’ve had ups and downs the whole season,” Embiid added. “Missing guys, not being healthy, and they still find a way to be the No. 1 team in the East and to be able to come in and do what they did, they deserve a lot of credit. They have a great team, great guys overall, and obviously, great coaching, great front office, so a lot of credit to them.”
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