Embiid is taking it all in stride.
Joel Embiid has been one of the most exciting big men in the NBA over the last few years and has helped turn the Philadelphia 76ers into a consistent contender. There is no telling what the Sixers will be able to accomplish this season but for now, they look like the one team that can truly contend with the Milwaukee Bucks out East. Embiid has been known for his incessant trash-talking although this season, he has been fairly quiet on that front. With less trash-talking comes less aggressive play and analysts are starting to take notice.
Charles Barkley and Shaq of NBA on TNT recently called out Embiid for his lack of urgency. They believe Embiid hasn't played hungry this year and it has led to some dubious stats. In a recent media scrum, Embiid gave his thoughts on their remarks, which turned out to be quite level-headed.
“That’s what they do. Maybe they’re right,” Embiid told reporters. “I do think they’re right. I think I need to be more aggressive. Just need to impose myself and look to dominate. I think the whole season I haven’t done that and then you can see the way it’s affected my efficiency and my stats. I guess I need to go back to having fun and just dominate. I get what they’re saying, man. I think they’re right. I gotta make a change.”
With a record of 18-7, Embiid and the 76ers currently sit fourth in the Eastern Conference and have a real shot at doing some damage once the postseason begins. Embiid still has plenty of time to turn things around for himself before they go all the way bad so it's not time to worry just yet.