Joel Embiid Among 3 NBA Stars Bill Simmons ‘Guarantees’ to Knicks

Joel Embiid

Getty Joel Embiid

Bill Simmons believes the Philadelphia 76ers could lose the league’s reigning Most Valuable Player in the near future. On the September 7 episode of “The Bill Simmons Podcast,” Simmons mentioned Joel Embiid among the star players, including Giannis Antetokoumnpo and Donovan Mitchell – who he believes may leave their team for the New York Knicks.

“They’ll get one of those three guys, I guarantee,” Simmons said. “Giannis, Embiid, or Mitchell will be on that team a year from now.”

Simmons did not elaborate on who he believes is the most likely to join the Knicks. In Embiid’s case, for him to join the Knicks would most likely be via trade, as Embiid will enter the first year of a four-year, $213 million contract extension with the Sixers when the 2023-24 season starts.

The Knicks are coming off their most successful season since 2013. Going 47-35 in the regular season, the Knicks made it all the way to the Eastern Conference Semifinals, where they lost to the Miami Heat. The franchise’s history, along with New York itself, has proven to lure NBA stars in the past like Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire.

They may very well attract another star in the near future, but that doesn’t mean that star will be Embiid.

Nick Nurse’s Expectations for Joel Embiid

Though Embiid is the NBA’s reigning MVP, new Sixers head coach Nick Nurse has his own expectations for Embiid on both sides of the floor. On the “September 6 episode of “The Pat Bev Podcast With Rone,” Nurse explained to Patrick Beverley what kind of role Embiid will have under him.

“I hate to be boring and start at the defensive end, but I’m going to really expect a lot more rim protection from him,” Nurse said. “I would say that would be where I’m going to start at. We’re going to probably let our aggressive guards be really aggressive and funnel a lot of things to him. I am expecting that I always say like, he’s gonna take more swings at blocked shots.”

Nurse also expects Embiid to get better on the offensive end and what kind of offense the Sixers will run through him.

“I think he continues to develop and be creative on offense. I would imagine you’re gonna see him doing about a little bit of everything offensively from bringing it up the floor to running screen and rolls to DHOs to we’re going to be running some down screens, cross screens, back screens, whatever. They’re gonna have to defend everything with him, and hopefully, we can get him the ball.”

Joel Embiid Unfazed by James Harden Drama: Report

With all the drama going on between the Sixers and James Harden, ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne reported that Embiid has assured the team that he is not bothered by everything that has happened during the offseason.

“Thus far, Embiid has given the franchise assurances he is OK riding out the current drama with Harden, sources said. How long he gives them to resolve the matter remains to be seen,” Shelburne wrote in a September 6 story.

Though Embiid is reportedly fine for now, it’s very possible that he will have a limit in this situation.