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#pounditSaturday, June 22, 2024

Joel Embiid addresses being snubbed as All-Star Game starter

Joel Embiid holds a ball

Nov 27, 2019; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (21) warms up before action against the Sacramento Kings at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Joel Embiid seemed to make a statement on Saturday in his first game since not being voted as a starter to the NBA All-Star Game.

Embiid scored 47 points with 18 rebounds in his Philadelphia 76ers’ 126-119 win over the Denver Nuggets at Wells Fargo Center. He dominated in the paint and helped his team make a second-half comeback in the victory.

After the game, Embiid was interviewed by ABC/ESPN’s Cassidy Hubbarth, who asked the 76ers center about not being voted a starter for the All-Star Game. Embiid brushed aside the snub and said he was focused on bigger things.

“I keep getting disrespected, and it’s cool,” Embiid said. “I’m just going to try to keep helping my team win games. Try to get us to the No. 1 seed. And then the playoffs, all I ask is no freak injuries. I think I’m due for a big run, and my team too.”

Embiid has endured some bad luck during the playoffs.

In 2018, he was hit in the face and suffered a fractured orbital bone which caused him to miss his team’s first two playoff games and play using a mask in subsequent games. In 2019, he dealt with knee issues and also got sick in the playoffs. His Sixers were knocked out on an incredible bounce for Kawhi Leonard when the Toronto Raptors won the championship. In 2021, Embiid played through a tear in his knee. Then last year, Embiid played through a torn ligament in his thumb that required surgery.

Philly has not made it past the Eastern Conference semifinals since Embiid joined the team. Maybe he’s right that they’re due for a run.

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