After a dominant start of the season this year, Joel Embiid is slowly but surely putting his name in the same regard as some of the greatest Sixers to ever put on the uniform. Names like Allen Iverson, Wilt Chamberlain, Julius Erving, Moses Malone, and Charles Barkley all come to mind when having that discussion, but when exactly can we start talking about Joel Embiid in that mix?

Since Embiid’s entrance into the league, it was clear the potential was there, but the story has always started with injuries for the Sixers’ star center. Injuries delayed Embiid’s career by two full seasons, and while he hasn’t missed that much time again, he has still had little issues that have hindered his performance, especially late into the season.

For the past four seasons now, Embiid has been a top 10 player in the sport and as of Saturday night, he has scored 30+ points against every team in the NBA, except the Sixers of course. Embiid is one of the best all-around athletes this city has ever seen, he stands seven feet tall 280 pounds but moves like a point guard. Embiid can be seen taking the ball up the court at times, shooting threes slightly above league average as a center, and absolutely dominating the post night after night for the past three seasons. In fact, Embiid’s jump shot from the elbow is one of the most automatic things I have ever witnessed.

While Embiid has been very good since coming into the association, he has not been great. He has only shown this version of greatness for three years and some change. Embiid will need to keep himself as a top-ten player in the NBA for at least another season or two and have a little bit more playoff success before we start putting him with the likes of Iverson, Erving, and Chamberlain but he is surely on his way.

Embiid is this generation’s Iverson, he is one of the faces of the NBA and doesn’t figure to be leaving the city anytime soon. Embiid has blossomed in Philadelphia as a teenager one year removed from coming to the United States to a father in front of our very eyes, with that the Sixers Super Star has gone from good to great. He surely has the chance in the near future to be on the same level as some of the Sixers all timers if he continues at this pace.


Photo via USA TODAY Sports, Bill Streicher

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