Following the Sixers’ 50th win of the season, The Inquirer’s Keith Pompey wrote a piece analyzing the accomplishment of winning 50 games for the fourth time in the last six seasons.
The article serves as a nice look at the seesaw of success, how to balance what you do in the regular season with an underwhelming playoff record. Plus, it highlights our guy Devon Givens.
Pompey ends the story with this quote from Joel Embiid.
“Obviously, everybody is always basing everything on winning a championship,” Embiid said. “But that’s not all that matters. Obviously, you want to win a championship. But would you rather be in contention every year? Or would you [rather] be at the bottom and fighting to make the playoffs every single year?”
Naturally, he was ripped to shreds on NBA Twitter for the comment.
People equate Joel Embiid’s comments with not caring enough about being great and downplaying the accomplishment of winning a championship. That somehow his perspective on things is not that of a championship caliber player.
While Embiid certainly has massive accomplishments still to achieve, the notion that he is downplaying a championship just doesn’t hold weight. This is your superstar telling you to look around and try to enjoy the moment a little bit.
Look at what the 76ers have been since the golden age of the late 1970s to the mid-1980s ended.
Since Billy Cunningham’s departure as head coach, the 76ers have made it to the NBA Finals once and the Eastern Conference Finals once. The magical season of 2000-01, spearheaded by Allen Iverson’s MVP performance, is the sole outlier in nearly forty years of underwhelming Sixers’ success.
From 1985-86 to Embiid being drafted in 2014, the 76ers had three 50-win seasons and advanced beyond the Eastern Conference Semifinals once. Joel Embiid has guided them to four 50-win seasons in the last six seasons, not to mention that comes with multiple head coaches, front offices and incredibly varied roster constructions.
To an NBA superstar that lacks perspective beyond just solely winning a ring, this type of chaos would have run him out the door years ago.
Yes, there’s more for Embiid to accomplish.
But don’t let the goal blind you from success that is hard to match in recent Sixers’ history.
Hear my full analysis on his comments from Sunday’s show, right here: