Joel Embiid is the best player in the league, and it’s not close. Over his past twenty games, Joel “Do a 180” Embiid has been averaging more than 30 points a game and more than 10 rebounds per game. His official averages over the last 20 games are 31.8 points per game, 10.4 rebounds per game, and 4.2 assists per game on 53.5/37.7/84.5 % shooting splits.
Cutting that sample size down from 20 to 5, the numbers only get more astonishing. In his last 5 games, Embiid has averaged even more points per game, bumping his average up to 38.4 points per game in just 32.2 minutes per game. During this stretch, he has been scoring at an efficient rate as well, with shooting splits of 57.4/47.1/81.5.
Embiid has also continued to establish his special dominance on the road, extending his streak of scoring 30 points in away games to twelve, one of five players to do so in the past 50 years, with the most recent of players being future teammate James Harden. Counting home games, Joel Embiid has scored at least 30 points in 15 of his last 17 games to lead the Sixers to the 6th seed in the Eastern Conference with only three fewer wins than the 1st seeded Miami Heat. With Embiid’s 30 point dominance ever continuing, it’s easy to overlook the adversity he has had to overcome this season.
From a nagging injury early in the season, to COVID protocols, to an All-Star point guard refusing to play, Embiid has dealt with all one can imagine. Add on top of that a max contract power forward having his worst statistical season as a starter and constant trade rumors surrounding every piece of your team not named Embiid, and many would have given Embiid a pass for having a rough year, especially with every team in the NBA knowing that the ball is going to Embiid. Despite this, Embiid still has been torching defenses constantly from everywhere on the court, including generating assists.
Joel Embiid has done everything that the Sixers could have asked of him and has excelled in every way. The 76ers would be a lottery dweller this season if not for the spectacular play of Joel Embiid in every facet of the game. If Embiid raises the ceiling of every player he plays with and raises the ceiling of the entire team to a legitimate playoff team, how would he not be the league’s Most Valuable Player?