How about Joel Embiid?
The Sixers center will sit the team’s final game of the regular season against the Pistons. We witnessed pure and utter greatness this season in Philadelphia by Embiid who now officially will lead the NBA in scoring. He is the first center to accomplish that feat since Shaquille O’Neal in the 1999-2000 season. In fact, he is the first center to average 30+ points per game since 1982… 40 years. Embiid also has the most points per minute of any NBA player in history with .83 per minute.
What Embiid did on the floor this season was historic.
Beyond what Embiid did on the court, it’s what he did off the court that has been the most impressive. Embiid has slowly become the man and the leader that the fans of Philadelphia had hoped he could be. After entering the NBA in 2014, it was clear that Embiid was not necessarily a leader. Since then, Embiid has experienced tough losses and become a father, both have shaped him into the player that he is now.
Every time Embiid stepped on the floor this season it was for one reason and one reason only, to win. There wasn’t one instance where he seemed to be taking the game lightly or just simply going through the motions which is very uncommon in today’s NBA.
It was Embiid who held his teammates accountable from game one to game 82 this year. It was Embiid who held the Sixers together after looking to be in shambles amid the Ben Simmons saga earlier this season. It was Embiid who had the Sixers within a game of first place at the trade deadline when Simmons still refused to play. It was Embiid who put his body on the line in order to win night after night.
The Sixers superstar deserves so much more praise for what he has done this season, on and off the court. Embiid forced the Sixers hand to acquire James Harden because of what he did this season.
Embiid’s magical season will continue into the playoffs as he looks to get them out of the second round of the playoffs for the first time in his career. If anyone can do it, it’s the big man from Cameroon.
Say it with us… EMVPIID!
Photo via Inside Hook