Joel Embiid was absolutely dominant last night in a 106-103 win versus the Clippers. Joel Embiid has been absolutely dominant all season. Joel Embiid is the MVP of the league.
Let’s get the one, and only, argument against Joel Embiid out of the way now, he has missed 18 games. If he doesn’t miss another game he will miss 25% of the season. I understand that they say the best ability is availability, but in reality the best ability is ability, and Joel has elavated his ability to play basketball at such a high level, an MVP level, that the missed games should be overlooked.
Embiid has been an absolute force all season, averaging 30 and 11 an 18 shots per game. Not only is he dominating and scoring at will, he is doing it at a n insanely efficient pace. The 7’2″ center is shooting 51% from the field, 38% from three, and 86% from the free throw line. That’s 65% true shooting. The offensive efficiency Joel is displaying is unbelievable.
Joel has expanded his game to become much more of a three level scorer. He is shooting 71% around the rim, 48% from 10-16 feet, and 38% from beyond the arc. He has taking guys off the dribble, shooting off the dribble, driving, stretching the floor, and then imposing his will in the post and down low. Joel’s hand print offensively is all over the court. The 35% usage rate, 7’2″ center is scoring at will, all over the court and teams haven’t been able to stop him.
Last season the 76ers brought in Al Horford as Joel Embiid insurance, let Joel’s good friend Jimmy Butler leave, and brought in Josh Richardson which made Joel’s job on court so much harder. Joel was left off the All NBA teams, and the 76ers were swept by the Boston Celtics in round one. Joel Embiid apparently took that to heart and with some crucial roster changes and expansion of his game, Embiid has evolved into the MVP of the league.
“Oh, yea for sure, not to be cocky but a player of my talent should never not be in those types of conversations. So, to not have made it, ya know it kind of hurt a little bit. And I remember when it came out, I was actually, we were at the hospital, she was about to give virth and I was trying to contain myself, I was so pissed off. I had headaches, she was giving birth like just in pain, and I was trying to contain myself. I was so mad… If it were another situation I would have broken something, there was a TV in the room I was thinking about breaking it.”Joel Embiid on The Lowe Post talking about missing out on All NBA last season.
Embiid apparently decided to harness that anger, along with the disappointment of the previous season, and losing to the Toronto Raptors in 7 the year prior and get with his trainer, Drew Hanlen, and add to his game, to unlock something else that would elevate his game even more, so that being swept in the playoffs wouldn’t happen again.
Embiid and Hanlen expanded Joel’s game into more than just a post player, he now operates at any spot on the floor, and his touch and shooting ability combined with his ability to score at all three levels and every area of the court, making him the closest thing to un-guardable that we have seen in Philadelphia since Iverson.
“One thing that has changed a lot, we started thinking about, ok like what has been my shortcoming in the past? Meaning in the playoffs, like, we started looking at, how do teams guard me? Mainly the previous years, I’ve been mainly a post player. So we just felt like we need to unlock something else, which I already have, but we need to keep working on it and actually unlock it so I can do it in a game, and feel comfortable in a game, which I’ve never felt comfortable doing in the game, even though I had it. We started talking about, ya know, playing at the nail, shooting off the dribble, ya know ball handling, ya know just putting me all over the floor, not just in the post, because in the post, it’s easy to double”Joel Embiid on The Lowe Post talking about changing up his game this off season after the playoff loss to the Celtics.
Joel Embiid’s force on offense has been so good, that it has overshadowed his play on the defensive side of the court, where he has been one of the best defenders in the league still. Embiid is the anchor if the second best defensive rated team (103 DRtg) in the league averaging 1.7 blocks per game, 10 defensive rebounds per game. He is top twenty in defensive win shares, defensive box plus/minus, defensive rating, and block percentage. Embiid should be in the DPOY conversation along with being one of the best offensive players in the league. True definition of a dominant two way player.
“Just bc I’m averaging 30 points a game, I also don’t want people to forget about the side of the ball that matters to me, more than the offensive side of the ball”Embiid on his defense. from The Lowe Post
Games missed is going to be a hurdle that Joel is going to have to overcome in order to win the MVP award. He may not be able to in the eyes of the voters, but regardless of the actual award, it doesn’t change the fact that Joel Embiid is having a completely dominant and historic season on the 39-17 first place Philadelphia 76ers. Votes or no votes Joel is the MVP of the league, his play is all the proof you need. He joins a list of MVPs who lead the league in win percentage and averaged 30 ppg. He is third on that list behind Wilt Chamberlain and Micheal Jordan per Elias Sports Bureau.
Last night marked three straight games with 35 points or more, and it’s the first 76er to do so since 2006 when Allen Iverson did it, per @nbahistory. Embiid is the real deal. He has regularly dominated games throughout the season, on both sides of the floor. He has expanded his game and is doing things that we have never seen before in a center. Embiid is on pace to have one of the most efficient 30 and 10 in the history of the NBA, and is leading the Philadelphia 76ers into the playoffs, currently as the number one seed, with the ultimate goal in mind. TO WIN A F**** TITLE for the city of Philadelphia, the fans, himself, and his new born son Arthur. Joel Embiid should be the 2021 NBA MVP.
“The biggest part that comes with it [Joel’s son] is just having him. Because i want him to see his dad at the highest level, I want him to see his dad, ya know, winning championships, not just one, winning CHAMPIONSHIPS. Obviously, you have to win one first and then you start thinking about the other ones. I want him to see his dad just dominant, winning MVPs and DPOYs. That was one fo the reasons why everything changed.”Joel Embiid on The Lowe Post about how having a kid has changed his game.