"This is a real story. Hand to God."
Philadelphia 76ers' All-Star center Joel Embiid made his Player's Tribune debut today by publishing an article titled, "It's Story Time," in which he begins, "I swear to God, my life is a movie."
Embiid, who grew up in Cameroon until the age of 16, had only been playing basketball for three months when he was offered to play high school hoops in Florida. Some of you may already know that, but in Embiid's "It's Story Time," he goes into detail about how truly improbable his journey to the league was.
He was laughed out of the gym on his first day of practice. He retreated to his dorm room, cried, and contemplated returning to Cameroon.
"But then I was sitting in my room listening to Lil Wayne or something, in my feelings, thinking about these dudes making fun of me, and suddenly my competitive side took over. I got really, really motivated. Whenever people say I can’t do something, I actually love it. It makes me want to prove them wrong so bad. So I said to myself, Alright, I’m literally just going to work and work in the gym until I’m good. KOBE."
Eventually, Embiid turned to YouTube for some pointers. When searching "How To Shoot 3 Pointers" and "How To Shoot Good Form" didn't work, Embiid says, "the light bulb went off, man. I typed in the magic words."
WHITE PEOPLE SHOOTING 3 POINTERS.
"Listen, I know it’s a stereotype, but have you ever seen a normal, 30-year-old white guy shoot a three-pointer? That elbow is tucked, man. The knees are bent. The follow-through is perfect. Always. You know how in America, there’s always an older guy wearing like EVERLAST sweat-shorts at the court? That guy is always a problem. His J is always wet."
The 24-year old center also discusses how much more difficult school was in Cameroon compared to America, the first NBA game he ever watched (2009 NBA Finals), how Bow Wow, Kanye and Kobe were his exposure to American culture, and the first time he got dunked on during a scrimmage at Kansas.
"He dunked the ball off my head, for real. But I didn’t even tell you the worst part. The worst part was that the entire Kansas women’s hoops team was sitting in the bleachers watching the scrimmage. The whole gym was laughing at me. It was crazy. Seriously, it was like a WORLDSTAR situation."
You can check out the fully story here.