Would Kelly Cut Sixer Embiid?


Feb 20, 2015; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia 76ers head coach Brett Brown (L) runs drills with center

Joel Embiid

(21) prior to their game against the Indiana Pacers at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Would Kelly Cut Sixer Embiid?

When it comes to the Eagles roster, if you were injured last year and come to the team at a discount? You are fair game, you’ll get your shot to make the roster.  You’ll get snaps. But if you are trying to make the team and you are injured this year? You’ve seen the news:

The Eagles released running back Matthew Tucker on July 22, 2015 due to a non-football related injury. Like the words to a classic rock song from Sly and the Family Stone: Everyday People “And different strokes for different folks And so on and so on and scooby dooby doo”.

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So when the announcement that Joel Embiid, who has yet to play a single minute in an NBA game despite being drafted third in the 2014 NBA draft, would be sitting out for what will likely be another season, nobody blinked or gasped or guessed that Sam Hinkie would cut his losses and pull the team support out from under Joel Embiid. But if this were Chip Kelly?

That’s a good question.  On one hand you have a highly rated prospect who could be a huge contributor to a team desperate for a star.  In that same line of thinking, you have a player you’ve invested a huge draft pick towards, a huge salary towards, and a huge investment of the world most skilled medical and sports science resources.   When you make that level of investment, you’d like to get a return for that return.

On the other hand, there’s the track record.  Make a bad choice?  He’ll try to work with you.  Show up limping for too many weeks? Pink slip and off you go.  If players aren’t generating tilm footage to evaluate,  they seem to have small shelf lives.  Chip Kelly doesn’t sit and ponder.  Evan Mathis sat out in hopes to work a bigger paycheck?  cut.  DeSean Jackson wanted to do compromise on the way he participated? He was cut as well.  But DeMeco Ryans, who was injured in a season ending injury in 2014, was retained.

The fact is that both Philly general managers: Chip Kelly and Sam Hinkie, have incorporated any break-through in sports medicine/science into the team’s training rigors.  Both general managers are working to build a winner in hopes to change recent disappointing seasons.  Both Chip Kelly and Sam Hinkie have unique visions, a plan that does not parallel the common practices of either of their respective sports.  And if the key element on a decision to cut a player is whether they buy in or don’t to the Kelly training regiment, I don’t have a good answer for whether Joel Embiid believes and continuously practices the sports science regiment.

Perhaps its best that we never know how Chip Kelly would handle the Joel Embiid issue.

But it does give enough reason to wonder.

Next: NBA Needs Strong Sixers Season

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