As most of us know by now, Philadelphia 76ers’ center Joel Embiid can do things on the very rare basketball court. This 7’2″, 250 lbs. big man is already an elite rim protector, averaging 3.0 blocks per game last season. His length and ability to protect the paint have made him into one of the most feared centers in all of the NBA today (although he’s only played 31 games). If you add his elite-level skill on offense (he averaged 20 ppg) with his solid defense, then you have yourself one hell of a player; although injury concerns still loom over Embiid as he’s been dealing with a nagging knee injury.
The 76ers took a chance on Embiid because they knew if they were patient, it could pay off massively for them; but boy did it ever! Joel Embiid has become one of the best young players in the NBA and continues to improve game by game.
When was Joel embiid drafted?
During his freshman year at Kansas, he averaged 11 points per game and eight rebounds. His sophomore season would be way more successful. Embiid averaged nearly double the number of points with 20 a game to go along with over seven rebounds.
Joel Embiid came into the NBA making an immediate impact, however, only playing in 31 games. He showed flashes of being dominant on both ends of the court which made people excited for what’s to come from him in the future.
When it comes down to it, Embiid has shown so much potential that there is no doubt that he will have numerous All-Star appearances throughout his career as well as multiple championships.
His tenacity on defense makes life hell for opposing bigs:
Joel Embiid’s stout frame at 250 pounds allows him to bang down low and make it hard for anybody attempting to get a shot up.
He has incredible lateral quickness and long arms which allow him to alter his opponents’ shots and protect the rim.
When he is fully engaged in defending the paint, there may not be a better defender in the entire league at doing so.
This also helps Sixers’ guards who are often put into situations where they have to help out their teammates because of getting beat off the dribble or losing their man.
His ability to get up and own the restricted area:
When Embiid gets in position, he can be almost impossible to stop. The athleticism that Embiid possesses has made him one of the best at getting to the paint and finishing. Last season he shot 65% around the rim which is very good considering how often big men are fouled at that range. There isn’t a single player in this league who can take Embiid off the dribble when he’s locked in on defense. When his man goes down into a defensive stance, they might as well just give it to him because their chances of scoring are extremely low if not next to none.
His offensive repertoire can be difficult to stop when he gets hot:
Although Embiid needs to work on his outside jumper, he doesn’t need it much because of his ability to score around the rim. He will hit the occasional hook shot or fade away in the post but if you are thinking that is all he does, think again. Embiid has a very good arsenal of post moves which allow him to overpower defenders big or small. They include turnaround jumpers, up-and-under moves, and even extended hook shots over both shoulders. All these weapons make him extremely hard for any player one-on-one. If the D collapses onto Embiid when he gets possession, he can kick it out to open shooters for an easy bucket.#
No one wants to see a player get hurt, but it may have been for the best with Embiid. He didn’t play during his first two years and now we are seeing him do this. It would be devastating if he were forced to sit out again; but as long as he is on the court, Sixers’ fans can rejoice and enjoy watching one of the most exciting young players in the NBA today.