NBA playoffs bad beat: Joel Embiid's scoreless fourth quarter was a betting disaster

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If you were one of the 88% of BetMGM bettors who bet on Joel Embiid to score more than 25.5 points versus the Miami Heat last night, you were probably counting your winnings already in the third quarter. By the time the final whistle sounded, though, all you were left with was a brutal bad beat story.

Masking the pain

With 14 minutes and 35 seconds remaining in regulation, Philadelphia’s superstar was sitting on 24 points. The self-described “Phantom of the Process” proceeded to disappear from the scoreboard for the rest of the game as his teammates scored the Sixers’ final 31 points.

Playing through more injuries than a crash test dummy, Embiid had been imposing his will around the rim, converting six of his eight two-point attempts and getting to the charity stripe more often than his league-leading 11.6 free throw attempts per game. He even knocked down a three-pointer for the first time since tearing a ligament in his right thumb nearly three weeks ago.

Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid reacts to his defensive stop against the Miami Heat during the first quarter in game four of the second round for the 2022 NBA playoffs at Wells Fargo Center. (Bill Streicher/USA TODAY Sports)
Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid reacts to his defensive stop against the Miami Heat during the first quarter in game four of the second round for the 2022 NBA playoffs at Wells Fargo Center. (Bill Streicher/USA TODAY Sports)

Embiid’s 24th point came at the line with 2:35 left in the third quarter. He bricked the second free throw attempt then missed a 14-foot jumper less than two minutes later that would have cashed the over on his points prop.

Bettors still had the entire fourth quarter for the NBA's leading scorer to score a basket. Embiid began the final frame on the bench, before coming back into the contest with 7:11 remaining. Nineteen seconds later, the MVP finalist missed another 14-foot shot. It would be Embiid’s last shooting attempt of any kind in the game as a resurgent James Harden scored 11 of Philly’s final 15 points to seal the victory.

The Sixers are now +120 to win the series after tying it up at 2-2. They were +650 on BetMGM after falling into an 0-2 hole without Embiid.

Stats provided by nba.com.

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