Don’t ever question Joel Embiid’s heart or pain threshold. He played seven hard-fought playoff games on a torn meniscus last June and averaged 30.4 points and 12.7 rebounds per game.
On Tuesday, Embiid received a supermax extension that keeps him in Philadelphia through the 2026-27 season. The Sixers’ All-Star center had been contemplating possible offseason surgery on his injured right knee, but ultimately opted against any procedure. Embiid decided to trust his body and let it heal on its own, according to ESPN’s Ramona Shelbourne.
The 27-year-old big man hinted that was his preferred method for recovery after Game 7 of the Eastern Conference semifinals. And Sixers president Daryl Morey agreed on trusting Embiid to know what was best for his body. Remember, the runner-up for NBA MVP also missed 11 games last season due to a bone bruise in his left knee.
“Man, it’s a torn meniscus, it is what it is,” Embiid told reporters on June 20 after Game 7. “I guess there’s a good and bad. We lost now I can take care of my body. That’s something that I thought hard about, playing on it, ultimately I decided to do it. But that was my choice and got to live with the results, at the end of the day when it comes to my future I’ll be fine.”
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Role Model in Community, Superstar on the Court
Sixers managing partner Josh Harris praised Embiid for being a role model in the community and a “true MVP-caliber superstar on the court” in a press release announcing the contract extension. He gets a whopping $261 million in total money after the final two years of his current deal are factored in. Embiid – drafted No. 3 overall in 2014 – represented himself in the contract negotiations.
“Joel is the definition of elite – a role model in our community and a true MVP-caliber superstar on the court,” Harris said in a statement. “Since he was drafted in 2014, his rare blend of skills, charisma and leadership has transformed this franchise. We couldn’t be more grateful and excited to continue watching him in a 76ers uniform.”
Worth every penny, right? Embiid has 173 career double-doubles, which ranks second all-time in franchise history since the 1983-84 season. Charles Barkley owns the top spot with 398. The 7-footer is also the NBA’s all-time leader in points per 36 minutes (29.3 points), ranking ahead of Michael Jordan and George Gervin among players who have debuted since 1954-55.
Sixers Face Jazz in Final Summer League Game
The Sixers get back on the court today at 3:30 p.m. for their final game in the Las Vegas Summer League. They’ll take on a Utah Jazz team sporting a 3-1 record and led by Udoka Azubuike, the No. 27 overall pick in the 2020 NBA draft.
Philly heads into this one with a 2-2 record after watching Paul Reed dominate on Sunday with 27 points and 20 rebounds in 34 minutes. He’s one of just four players averaging a double-double this summer.
“I had a couple double-doubles,” Reed said, via NBA.com. “That’s what I’m supposed to do. I give myself a B.”