Published: Wed, October 11, 2017
Sports | By Brett Lawson

Joel Embiid, 76ers Agree to Five-Year, $148M Deal

Joel Embiid, 76ers Agree to Five-Year, $148M Deal

For all his promise, Embiid was only recently cleared for 5-on-5 activity and hasn't taken the court for Philly's preseason games. Some of those accomplishments include Embiid winning Defensive Player of the Year, MVP, as well as being named to All-NBA teams.

ESPN was first to report the contract, which is the maximum rookie scale extension.

There's a pretty good chance Embiid only plays half of the Sixers' games this season, the last before this monstrous extension kicks in. He finally made his National Basketball Association debut in 2016-17 and was fantastic in limited action, averaging 20.1 points, 7.8 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 2.5 blocks in 31 games. Even Greg Oden (Greg Oden!) played 82 games and more than 1,800 minutes in his first two seasons.

Some of you will gasp at the potential earnings, but there are few better ways for the Sixers to invest that money than to gamble on Embiid's talent. Having said that, Embiid's impact on the floor, when available, has been profound. He plays the game with a passion not displayed by most others of his caliber and " ... does things on the court that remind me of somebody who is able to hear music and just play the song", said Sixers head coach Brett Brown during a media session on October 9. More to the point, the franchise is hopeful enough in his future that it was willing to promise him almost $150 million. The Sixers are reportedly hopeful he will be in the lineup to open the regular season. He's the guy. Everybody knows he will bring us to another level.

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Sources will only say at this point that the Sixers have "some" safeguards in place to protect them from the possibility of Embiid missing significant time with injuries. J.J. Redick and Amir Johnson were signed as free agents over the summer, moves signaling that The Process has reached a new phase. Embiid has been the focus for the Sam Hinkie disciples shouting "Trust the Process" since he was drafted third overall in 2014. The Sixers had until October 16 to extend Embiid, and got it done a week prior to that.

We'll have to wait and see just how big the Sixers' bet is, but they've made it and there is no turning back now.

"Joel Embiid is a transformative young talent that you rarely come across in our game", said Sixers president Bryan Colangelo in the press release announcing the deal.

Embiid, a native of Cameroon, appreciates that the 76ers were always supportive as he dealt with the injury troubles before finally making it on the court last season.

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