Embiid Reflects on Preseason
Joel Embiid’s pre-season might have only consisted of about 29 and a half minutes of basketball spread out over the 76ers’ final two games, but in that window of time, he still was able to take advantage of valuable live reps.
The big man found the experience to be beneficial.
“I needed it,” Embiid said Friday in Kansas City.
That night, he and the Sixers powered past the Miami Heat, 119-95, to close their exhibition slate with a second consecutive victory. Embiid accounted for 5 points and 7 rebounds, and finished the preseason with 27 points, 14 boards, and 2 blocks overall.
“I still have to work on a lot of stuff,” said Embiid. “I just got to build on the [things] that [coaches are] going to need me to, be the best player I can be, and the leader that they want me to.”
Particularly on the heels of his explosive pre-season debut Wednesday versus Brooklyn, Embiid thought his defense could use some fine-tuning. There were two instances in which the Nets established themselves deep in the paint, and scored.
“I respect how critical he is of himself,” Brett Brown said last week. “Positionally, he’s fine. I’m always challenging our bigs to be more vocal. The game is so fast, there’s multiple pick and rolls.”
On the whole, Brown felt Embiid has performed well.
“Given what he’s been through, I think he’s exceeded my expectations,” Brown said Friday. “We’ll all make better judgement of how far along is he really when you really plan an NBA game. To-date, he’s taken the opportunities he’s had, made the most of them, he’s put in work. He’s been a complete pro with trying to learn and get his body and his cardio right under the guidelines that have been given to him.”
“It was good to get out there,” said Embiid. “I felt good out there. Everything is fine, and I’m happy, excited about the season.”
Check back later for additional entries to today’s Notebook.