Joel Embiid had some explaining to do.
During Game 1 of the 76ers' playoff series against the Brooklyn Nets, Embiid and Amir Johnson were spotted on the sideline looking at what appeared to be text messages on Johnson's. Johnson, who was inactive for the game, was seen pulling out a cell phone before he and his Philadelphia teammate took a quick glance at the device. Fans and sports commentators immediately criticized the move, as it was a violation of the NBA Operations Manual.
"It’s completely unacceptable and we will deal with it internally, very soon," Sixers coach Brent Brown said after the team's 111-102 loss. "It's not something we are and certainly don't condone.
After the game, The Athletic's Shams Charania reported that the Sixers fined Johnson.
Embiid, who finished Saturday's game with 22 points and 15 rebounds, addressed the incident in front of reporters.
"Obviously, I wasn't on my phone," he said. "I just looked down because [Johnson] said that his daughter was extremely sick, and he was checking on her. So, I don't know. I just looked, but he was checking on his daughter. She's sick."
Game 2 of the 76ers-Nets series will take place at 8 p.m. ET this Monday at the Wells Fargo Center.