The Philadelphia 76ers are having a surprisingly good season so far. They’ve lost only 3 games in their last 12, and despite their latest loss against the Blazers, the Sixers are sitting alone at the top of the Eastern Conference with an 18-9 record.
With all the changes on the roster, coaching position, and the front office, the main reason for such a season is The Process. Joel Embiid is having the best season of his career, averaging 29.3 points, 10.7 rebounds, 2.7 assists, 1.3 steals, and 1.2 blocked shots per game. He’s doing all that while shooting 55.3% from the field, 39% from deep, and 85% from the free-throw line. Even his teammates recognize his impact on the game.
“I think he realizes how dominant he is. He continues just to get better, especially with his passing and his patience. He lets the game come to him a little bit more now. He’s just been dominant. I haven’t seen anybody who can stop him.Ben Simmons, Yahoo
Embiid has been a dominant player ever since he came to the league in 2016, especially on the defensive end. However, this year, his offensive output has been more efficient – he has 67.6% true shooting percentage, nine percentage points more than his career average.
One other thing that separates this year’s Embiid from previous campaigns is consistency. He can now show his best game night in and night out, and it could be linked with the way he approached this offseason. Embiid spent the summer training with his personal trainer Drew Hanlen and Chris Babcock, Sixers player development coach. Joel also hired a chef, nutritionist, physical therapist, and massage therapist to take much better care of his body. Still, he isn’t where he wants to be with his body and game, which is encouraging for all Sixers fans out there.
“We got a long way to go. I don’t think we’re close to where we want to be. Me, personally, I don’t think I’m close to where I want to be, and I know for sure I would say we’re not there yet. Every day we’re still learning how to play with each other, but I still think we got a long way to go. We got more to give.”Joel Embiid, Yahoo
For the first time in his career, Embiid did what he announced a few times in the past. He got in shape and is letting his game do the talking. Alongside Nikola Jokić, Embiid is also a top 3 candidate and proof the big man can still be the foundation of a championship-caliber team.