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Phil From Mt Airy: Pick Your Spot on the Sixers Parade Route

Sixers Embiid Photo Credit Unknown

Celebrate. Dance. Pick your spot on South Broad Street and prepare for a parade. Yesterday your Philadelphia 76ers guaranteed that the future includes multiple title runs, and an eventual NBA Title for your home team. The signing of Joel Embiid for 5 years, and a maximum 147 million dollars insured that Sunday night.

If you have questions, honestly, I get it. If you’re afraid however, let it go.

The 76ers didn’t have to do this. Having played only 31 NBA games and on a contract that expires after the 2017 season that allowed the Sixers to match any offer, the team was in the driver’s seat. They’re wasn’t the fear of a team making an unmatchable offer, because the Sixers cap position would enable them to easily match any outside offer, and possibly get a better situation, as that would set them up with him as a “Larry Bird” player, which monetarily makes it much easier to retain your best player(s).

That’s not your concern though. You think I’ve lost it, and ignore the injury history. It’s true that Joel Embiid has missed 215 games over the past 3 years due to injury, and still hasn’t played yet this fall.

Think this through. This team has often been accused of overkill when it comes to rehabbing their players. In my opinion, this time they have managed this perfectly.

Think of Andrew Toney, and how the 76ers severely damaged his career, and shortened it tragically, by rushing him back from an injury to his foot, when he clearly was not 100%, he never fully recovered by playing through this injury, and the city lost possibly the best shooting guard in its history. I’m sure it was tempting, at times, for management, to ask him to play, to get all they could as the team struggled through long losing streaks, but they were patient. That allows me to believe 100% that they’ve done their due diligence, and know that the Joel Embiid they have locked into a long term contract is a healthy player, who’s chance of recurrence, or future injury is the same as that of any player in the NBA.

All that being said, is he worth 147 million? A bargain. Potentially the best Sixers deal since Moses Malone, and you know how that turned out. This kid is a generational talent whose lone comparison is Hakeem Olajuwon. But let’s not stop there. He is primed to be a much bigger force than the Rocket’s Hall Of Fame center was. Offensively, he’s got a much better tool kit. Quicker up the floor, better by far on the perimeter, with a range that is unquestionably superior. Better in open space ball handling with good vision and a desire to be a all around basketball player. His ceiling is limitless. Let’s not forget, he averaged nearly 21 points per as a rookie playing just 25 minutes a game for the Sixers in 2016. That’s somewhere 38 a game if you care to extrapolate.

Besides, look around the league. 125 million for Jrue Holliday. Will he EVER have the impact on an NBA franchise this kid can? No. Kyle Lowry was paid 100 million dollars. Personally, I love Lowry and think he’s a great player. Can he lead an NBA team to a title? No. However, Joel Embiid can, and elevate his teammates by his very presence on the floor. This is market value today, and the Sixers were proactive in retaining a player who clearly is ready to carry this team, take over games, and be the charismatic, face of the franchise, superstar, this team has starved for far too long.

The future has been locked in with this deal. The combination and presence of Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid creates a nightmare of match ups opposing coaches will fret over for years. Unique, young, and hungry, complimented by Saric, Fultz, and the deepest current roster since ’84 (supplemented by a crop of future first round picks) should guarantee this contract becomes the bargain it feels like today. Dare to dream, haven’t you lost enough? It’s over.

The future is here to stay, pick a parade spot, cause the Sixers are on their way, led by Joel Embiid.

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