LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- After a terrifying fall late in the third quarter of Sunday's 110-106 loss to the Boston Celtics, it appeared Philadelphia 76ers forward Tobias Harris' season was about to come to a close.
But after suffering a laceration over his left eye and being evaluated for a concussion, Harris returned for the final few minutes of Sunday's loss, as Boston closed out this first round playoff series in a four game sweep and ended Philadelphia's season.
"Just because I could," Harris said, when asked why he checked back into the game. "I felt okay enough to go back out there, and be able to try to do something to help us try to win.
"I'd rather go down with my guys than sitting in the back. So really, that was the main reason why."
Harris, who finished with 20 points in 35 minutes for the Sixers, was coming down the lane when he jumped in the air and got his legs tangled up with Celtics forward Jayson Tatum, causing them to be swept out from under him and for his body to go perpendicular with the ground. He then landed on the ground head-first, before writhing on the ground in pain and being attended to by Sixers personnel for several minutes -- including coach Brett Brown, who came over to check on him.
Harris eventually got up and walked off the court under his own power, holding a towel to his the left side of his head.
He returned with a bandage on it for the final few minutes, and blood appeared to be coming out of it by the time the game was over.
"I'm still in some pain with it," Harris said. "It was a hard fall, for sure. Obviously, got stitched up up here; and my ribs were kinda affected. Big thing is how I'm gonna be feeling tomorrow morning, and I'll see. So, hoping and praying for the best."
The Sixers were right in the game went Harris went out. But after he left with the team trailing 80-77 late in the third quarter, a 16-2 Celtics run over the final couple of minutes of the third and opening couple of the fourth left Boston with a 96-79 lead with 9:55 remaining, and all but sealed Philadelphia's fate.
"I feel like the game flipped when Tobias went out," Brown said. "I think it was a two-point game, three-point game at that stage. I think that they went on a 16-2 run during that period; and at that moment, the game changed. Up until that moment, I felt pretty good about what we were doing."