After a few days of “pomp and circumstance,” the Sixers and Celtics gave up their afternoon tea for an afternoon game in front of 19,078 fans in London’s O2 Arena.
But because of the early start, and the highly touted matchup, all eyes were on the two Eastern Conference rivals. Here are some of the reactions to the action.
Kyrie Irving and Joel Embiid addressed the crowd before tip. Of course, Embiid urged them all to “Trust the Process”
— NBA (@NBA) January 11, 2018
The first quarter featured an aggressive Ben Simmons, who finished with 16 points, including two turnaround jumpshots that excited Twitter.
Some swish and chips. pic.twitter.com/XPiuo8XBcJ
— Philadelphia 76ers (@sixers) January 11, 2018
Did Ben Simmons really just hit a turn around jump shot pic.twitter.com/KIARJFi0gv
— Adam Naugle (@adam_naugle) January 11, 2018
BEN SIMMONS BASELINE TURNAROUND JUMPER PLAY ALL THE GAMES IN LONDON
— Matt Carey (@RealMattCarey) January 11, 2018
The Sixers built a 22-point lead midway through the second quarter, and as things were starting to get ugly, Jaylen Brown blew a kiss to the Sixers bench after hitting a three-pointer.
— Keith Pompey (@PompeyOnSixers) January 11, 2018
Jaylen Brown seals this 3 with a kiss blown in the direction of the Sixers' bench. pic.twitter.com/LXnZBfOce2
— Taylor Snow (@taylorcsnow) January 11, 2018
Something weird, but all too familiar happened from there. … The Sixers blew a double-digit lead.
Jaylen Brown really blew a kiss at the 76ers bench after hitting a three that put the Celtics down 18 and then they continued putting together a 47-19 run. https://t.co/rBUDvtv1IK
— Jay King (@ByJayKing) January 11, 2018
The Sixers continued to melt down, and ended up losing, 114-103. But, even as the game was all but decided, there was one more firework: Ben Simmons vs. Marcus Morris.
Marcus Morris went after Ben Simmons 😳 pic.twitter.com/T4o8XyT4Zs
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) January 11, 2018
Turns out, the Sixers’ rookie, who grew up playing Aussie Rules Football, may have been trusting his instincts.
Ben Simmons lays a good ol' Aussie football hip and shoulder on Marcus Morris, who doesn't appreciate it pic.twitter.com/GISxzjPhCZ
— The Render (@TheRenderNBA) January 11, 2018
Ben Simmons vs. Marcus Morris would be quite a heavyweight fight.
— Kevin O'Connor (@KevinOConnorNBA) January 11, 2018
Morris seemed a little upset even after the game. …
Morris on Simmons dust-up: "I think he took a little cheap shot but it’s all right. I take a lot of cheap shots, too. It’s good that Philly’s got some OK guys, some tougher guys. But I promise you that won’t happen again. But it’s a good shot. It is what it is."
— Adam Himmelsbach (@AdamHimmelsbach) January 11, 2018
But Ben Simmons seemed ready to move on.
Ben Simmons on his clash with Marcus Morris during today’s game:
“It was a strong hit, I guess he didn’t like it. That’s about it.” pic.twitter.com/XmLnig025f
— NBC Sports Philadelphia (@NBCSPhilly) January 11, 2018