As a Sixers fan, the only things I have in the world right now are 1) NBA Draft rumors, and 2) the dream of a 2014 first-round draft pick getting healthy and being able to play. Especially that second one. I’ve watched probably six hours of grainy cell phone footage of Joel Embiid doing drills against no one, which I’ve analyzed the way lunatics analyze “photos” of the Loch Ness Monster. I must know everything. It’s not healthy. It can’t be.
But it does bring us to this: Embiid just appeared as a guest on Vice Sports’ Ride Along video series to talk about, well, all things Embiid. Yes, I will click on that. And I did. And so did you, apparently. We’re in this together.
Topics of discussion include:
- His start with basketball as a teenager in Cameroon, and how far he’s come (“I used to be ass”)
- His personality (“I’m lovable, I’m funny”)
- How he’s dealing with his injuries (“I just play video games and work out”)
- Social media (“I was going nuts on there”)
- Those Shirley Temple rumors (“I usually drink three to four pitchers a day” <— sarcasm)
It’s a pretty fun video and it gives fans at home a little glimpse into Embiid’s personality. That’s what a rational person would say, at least. But if you put your ear to the ground right now, you’ll probably hear the growing, distant rumble of less-than-rational people charging this direction and shouting things about making videos when he could be rehabbing his injury and so on and so forth, as though the only way to heal a navicular bone is through non-stop, high intensity physical labor. This is bad. So instead of doing that, I have chosen to drown out that sound by reading this report from his recent workout out loud over and over.
Embiid took entry passes and spun this way and that. He shot lefthanded. He shot righthanded. He did drop steps. He ducked under. He floated soft hooks through the net. He powered to the basket for dunks. Finally, he did a crossover dribble from right to left behind his legs, took one gigantic stride and rose above the rim, above everything, above all the upturned faces gaping at him, above the very limit of hope an NBA franchise can have in one player, and he brought the ball down through the rim with a crash.
Shirley Temples > Gatorade.