Karl-Anthony Towns and Joel Embiid have had their disputes on the court, but Towns was happy to see the Philadelphia 76ers star back to full strength in Saturday's game against his Minnesota Timberwolves:
Embiid missed nine games after testing positive for COVID-19 on Nov. 8, but he scored 42 points and added 14 rebounds in Saturday's 121-120 loss to Minnesota.
Towns knows firsthand the impact of COVID-19 after losing eight family members, including his mother, to complications from the coronavirus. He also contracted the virus himself and told Michael Pina of Sports Illustrated that he lost 50 pounds before recovering.
After Towns announced his mother had been hospitalized, Embiid offered support to his rival on social media.
It was a break from what had been a serious beef between two of the top centers in the NBA.
The two fought each other during a 2019 game that led to ejections for both players:
This seemed to carry over into the April 2021 battle between the two teams, featuring a lot of physicality between the stars.
While the on-court excitement didn't slow Saturday in a back-and-forth battle, it's clear the players can put aside their differences when needed.