Philadelphia 76ers: Joel Embiid named an All-Star starter once more

(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

Joel Embiid is the best center in the NBA.

He’s averaging the fourth-most points of any player in the NBA, the 12th most rebounds, and is arguably the best player on the best team in the Eastern Conference. Embiid is also averaging the third-highest usage rate, the 11th-highest defensive rating, the seventh-highest offensive win shares, the 13th-highest defensive win shares, the sixth-highest overall win shares, and the second-highest box plus/minus of any player in the NBA behind only Nikola Jokic.

Embiid has also made the second-most free throws in the league behind only Trey Young and goes to the line more than any other player, even James Harden.

Throw that all together in a blender with a little Mountain Dew for good measure, and it’s hard to argue with Sam Hinkie’s decision to select the then-injured Cameroonian big man out of Kansas third overall in a draft that also featured players like Aaron Gordon, Marcus Smart, and Zach LeVine.

And now, Embiid is being rewarded for his efforts with his fourth-straight trip to the NBA All-Star Game as the starting five for the Eastern Conference.

The Legend of Joel Embiid continues to grow in Philadelphia 76ers’ lore.

More from Section 215

Say what you will about the Philadelphia 76ers, but the franchise sure knows how to run an All-Star voting campaign.

From sending out “For Your Consideration” Shirley Temple kits in 2017 to collaborating local artist Dhwani Saraiya to make custom All-Star covers for Embiid, Ben Simmons, and Tobias Harris, the Sixers aren’t just good at social media.

For the fourth straight year in a row, Embiid has finished in the top-5 in overall Eastern All-Star fan votes (third in 2021) and will now earn an opportunity to represent the team and the conference as a whole at the game taking place in Atlanta this March.

And, though we don’t know for sure, there’s a very good chance he won’t be the only member of the team joining in on the festivities.

While Tyrese Maxey, unfortunately, won’t be eligible to play in the Rising Stars contest this season, as the exhibition game isn’t being held as part of the one night only event, there’s still a chance we could see Seth Curry represent the City of Brotherly Love in the 3 point shooting contest, as he is knocking down 47.9 percent of his attempts from beyond the arc and could bring some star power to the contest.

Sidebar: The Slam Dunk contest will also be taking place during halftime of the All-Star game this season, so we might also get to see Dwight Howard throw down the rock for the second time in as many seasons.

There’s also a better than not chance that either Ben Simmons or Tobias Harris – or maybe even both – will be named to the game as reserves, as both are playing the best basketball of their careers at the moment and could have an inside track to get the nod if Doc Rivers is named the Eastern Conferences head coach due to Philly’s first-place record.

Boy, Doc Rivers, Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons, and Tobias Harris all in the All-Star game together? Could you even imagine?

Next. Blake Griffin may not want to reunite with Doc Rivers. dark

But tonight isn’t about hypotheticals. No, tonight is all about the Carson Wentz trade celebrating Joel Embiid’s incredibly elevated play and the rest of the league taking note of it. While Hulu has live sports, the Philadelphia 76ers have the best center in the NBA and, that, my friends, is a pretty darn good feeling.