TD Garden was absolutely bumpin’ in Monday’s Game 1 win over the Sixers.
Carrying the momentum of last Saturday’s Game 7 win over the Bucks into a 117-101 victory, even without the services of Jaylen Brown (hamstring), a definite home-court advantage was heard on every Boston possession.
But don’t count Sixers center Joel Embiid among those impressed by the Garden crowd.
“It was OK,” Embiid said of the Garden atmosphere. “I think our fans are louder than that.”
With a Philly-high 31 points and 13 rebounds, Embiid said that he enjoyed the heckling heard from Boston fans.
“It didn’t bother me. They were great,” Embiid said. “They supported their team tonight. It was good. I love that type of atmosphere because it kind of elevates my game knowing that there’s a lot of fans out there that are talking trash and saying some crazy stuff, too. I love when people talk trash. Keep bringing it on and we’re going to see how it goes.”
Perhaps nobody got it worse than Sixers rookie Ben Simmons, though, who was showered with, “Not-A-Roo-Kie” chants at the free throw line and countered with, “He’s a roo-kie” chants when Jayson Tatum was at the line.
Celtics fans chanting ????"not a rookie" at Ben Simmons ???? pic.twitter.com/RUQUAgDiDA— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) May 1, 2018
Simmons, for what it’s worth, said he heard the chants, but did not let them bother him.
“I don’t care,” said Simmons. “It doesn’t affect me at all.”
But with an open challenge of sorts from the 24-year-old Embiid, you can bet that Thursday’s crowd will try to up the ante with more noise thrown Embiid and Simmons’ way in Game 2.