Joel Embiid and Karl Anthony-Townes got into a fight on Wednesday night. But Ben Simmons‘ choke hold had everyone talking.

Embiid and Anthony-Townes got tangled up away from the ball in a fight that got close to fist fighting if they didn’t immediately get into body locks trying to bring each other down on the ground. Both players were ejected after a long review session by referees.

The incident happened when the Philadelphia Sixers where defending the ball against the Minnesota Timberwolves. A switch on defense got Embiid to guard Anthony-Townes under the rim. And that’s when the fight happened.

Video showed that Embiid pushed his body against the T’Wolves Forward, tangling his arm under Anthony-Townes (KAT).  KAT tried to untangle himself, pulling his other arm up. And that’s when the pushing and punching came in. KAT tried punching Embiid and missed, while Embiid pocket KAT in the eye. They grabbed each other by the neck and waist, clearly not knowing exactly what was next. By the time they were headed to the floor to scuffle, both teams were swarming the two.

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But there was a second incident that social media is calling for a review of. Philadelphia’s Ben Simmons was one of the first to disrupt the altercation, creating one of his own. Simmons got behind opposing player Anthony-Townes and finished bringing him to the floor pretty much with his body weight alone as Anthony-Townes was already falling and Simmons might as well have jumped on his back.  Fans are accusing him of a  dangerous move when he went for a choke hold.

The Sixers All-Star guard has been met with criticism over endangering his opponent with an unnecessary move.

While the referees officially put in their report that Simmons was a ‘peacemaker,’ the Timberwolves are rejecting that assessment.

Embiid has a history of trying to get under people’s skin. In 2018 he famously taunted New York Knick Michael Beasley, was trolled by pretty much all of Toronto including Drake last season, and has been deemed an internet troll (which he affirms).

 

The play is under review by the league as both Embiid and Anthony-Townes face possible suspensions. League president of basketball operations Kiki VanDeWeghe said video and interviews are being held about the situation.

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