Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

Philadelphia 76ers center and former MVP Joel Embiid is having a bad, bad time in the playoffs. It’s bad enough for him that he’s playing on one leg and Jalen Brunson’s 47 points led the Knicks to a Game 4 victory and 3-1 series lead. The series can be clinched at Madison Square Garden tomorrow.

Worse yet, however, was Embiid’s shameless griping about the largely pro-Knicks crowd at Philadelphia’s Wells Fargo Arena. In both Games 3 and 4, New York fans made the short trip to the City of Brotherly Love to support their team. What no one expected was them turning two road games into home games lite.

Naturally, Embiid had some thoughts.

“Disappointing,” he said to media after the game. “I love our fans. Think it’s unfortunate, and I’m not calling them out, but it is disappointing. Obviously, you got a lot of Knicks fans, and they’re down the road.

“But I’ve never seen it, and I’ve been here for 10 years. Yeah, it kind of pisses me off, especially because Philly is considered a sports town. They’ve always shown up, and I don’t think that should happen. Yeah, it’s not OK.”

If I may:

Two words: Oh please! Seriously, does Joel Embiid even know where he plays? Is he really aware that the Knicks are, in his words, “down the road”? Because the way he’s complaining, it’s like he gets on the bus to New York and falls asleep till they’re at the hotel.

And forget that it’s easy to get to Philadelphia from the city. How about the inordinate number of colleges in the Philadelphia area. Each probably has its fair share of students from the New York area who support the Knicks.

Think about it: Penn, LaSalle, Temple, Drexel, Villanova & St Joe’s. And let’s throw Swarthmore and Haverford in there just for fun. That’s a healthy mix of bigger and smaller schools, and Knicks fans are from an even bigger city and its surrounding area.

Was it a surprise that so many Knicks fans showed up in Philadelphia? Absolutely. Should Embiid have been surprised that they turned out in droves for a playoff game? Absolutely not.

But here we are. Embiid is rattled, so much that he tried crippling Knicks center Mitchell Robinson out of the series. Robinson didn’t play in Game 4 with his sprained ankle, but still warmed up before tip-off. That implies he could be closer to ready for Game 5 on Tuesday.

In the meantime, Joel Embiid can sit with his just plain dumb comments about Philadelphia Phans and prepare for his winter trade demand. Will he drop it in time to beat the Knicks at the Garden twice?

We’ll soon find out, but let’s be honest. Embiid’s probably fuming at having to play three road games in a row, including one more at home.

Josh Benjamin has been a staff writer at ESNY since 2018. He has had opinions about everything, especially the Yankees and Knicks. He co-hosts the “Bleacher Creatures” podcast and is always looking for new pieces of sports history to uncover, usually with a Yankee Tavern chicken parm sub in hand.