Heat’s Justise Winslow mum on 15k fine for stepping in Joel Embiid’s mask

Ben Simmons of the Philadelphia 76ers drives to the basket while being defended by Justise Winslow of the Miami Heat during the first quarter of Game 3 at American Airlines Arena. (Photo by Eric Espada/Getty Images)

MIAMI – Justise Winslow isn’t reacting to his $15,000 fine for intentionally stepping on a part of Joel Embiid’s mask during Game 3.

“I’m not going to even talk about it right now,” the Heat forward said before today’s Game 4. “My focus is on the game. It is what it is but I’m still out there playing.

“I didn’t get suspended so I’m going to do what I can to help my team win. I’m not concerned about it right now.”

Winslow, who is making $2.8 million this season, was fined for unsportsmanlike conduct. The incident occurred with 7:51 remaining in the second quarter of the Heat’s 128-108 loss to the Sixers on Thursday in Game 3 at AmericanAirlines Arena.

Winslow spotted the lens attached to the inside of Embiid’s mask on the floor and clearly intentionally stepped on it before picking it up as a time out was being called.

Embiid had to come out of the game as the Sixers repaired the mask. He was wearing the mask to protect his fractured orbital bone, which forced him to miss Philadelphia’s previous 10 games.

Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said he spoke with Winslow about the incident.

“We talked to him about it, we accept that fine,” he said. “It doesn’t add a distraction.”

Spoelstra then downplayed the significance of Winslow’s act.

“Adds to the side stories to what’s really going on,” he said.

Embiid joked about the situation.

“Justise stepped on it and tried to break it with his hands, but little does he know, I have about 50 of them,” Embiid said after Game 3. “So it’s going to take much more than that to get me out of this series. I’m going to be a nightmare for them, too.”

Embiid finished Game 3 with 23 points, seven rebounds, four assists and three blocks in his playoff debut.

Winslow had his playoff career high 19 points in Game 3, all in the first half.

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