Sixers Media Day: Highlights from Joel Embiid’s Press Conference

Philadelphia 76ers, Joel Embiid. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Philadelphia 76ers, Joel Embiid. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports /
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Joel Embiid, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Sixers vs. Bucks (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /

Giannis Antetokounmpo was very vocal throughout the offseason about wanting Milwaukee to go out and acquire another superstar player. Despite having two years left on his $228 million supermax extension, the two-time MVP kept hinting that his future might be in a different area code. Antetokounmpo was purposefully putting pressure on the Bucks’ front office.

It worked. Milwaukee mortgaged the future to get Lillard, the one guy who had openly lobbied for and gone on record wanting to play with. But Embiid didn’t go that route, and he doesn’t appear as if he ever will. That’s not in his DNA. And the reigning NBA MVP explained why he has never stormed into Daryl Morey’s office and demanded he make a trade for a difference maker.

“I mean, it’s tricky. I believe it can go both ways,” Embiid said. “I think I’m pretty smart most of the time, too. You can have guys wanting one thing and it might not be good for the team. So these guys, they get paid to make those decisions, so that’s why I leave it up to them. And if they want my opinion, then I give it but I trust them to just go out and make it happen. Like I said, any team that I’m on I’m still going to believe that I have a chance to win, no matter who is on the roster.”

Talent is one thing. The other? Luck.

Especially when it comes to injuries in the postseason.

“We got a lot of great players. I’m happy with what we have, just need to be a little lucky. My career being hurt in the playoffs at some point I just need a little bit of luck and we need it as an organization. And I think we’re looking up to someone like Tyrese [Maxey] to take that next step, hopefully, the situation with James [Harden] can be resolved. If he’s here — we love him and we want him to be with us — and I think we have a better team with him on the floor. And I think he knows it, too, so hopefully that gets resolved. If not, it doesn’t change anything. It doesn’t change the goal … the goal is still to go out there and try to win a championship.”