Following a disapponitng postseason exit last season, most people immediately ruled out the possibility of Philadelphia 76ers superstar Joel Embiid winning Most Valuable Player this season for the second year in a row. After all, the pool for the coveted plum has become much bigger than in recent years, and his biggest nemesis has just won an NBA championship — a massive statement after he lost out on a third MVP award.
But fast forward to the start of 2024, Embiid is on track to claim his second straight MVP after leading the 76ers to the third-best record in the East despite losing last season’s sidekick in James Harden and dealing with his own injuries.
76ers guard Patrick Beverley says Joel Embiid is on track to have the best individual season ever
Embiid currently leads the league in scoring at 34.8 a game — the only player to log more points than minutes (34.1) this season. He’s also averaging 11.8 rebounds and 6.2 assists per outing, the latter of which is easily a career-best for him. He has also led Philadelphia on defense, with the team touting the second-best defensive rating so far.
Clearly, Embiid is posting a tremendously strong individual season for the 76ers. In fact, his own teammate, Patrick Beverley, went on to say that he’s poised to register the best individual season in NBA history.
"If he finishes this season the way he's playing now, it would be the greatest season of a single player that's ever played basketball. That doesn't make you the best big man in the league, that makes you the best motherf**ker in the world. Jo, he is in a world of his own and I don't even think it's close."- Patrick Beverley, Pat Bev Pod
The numbers back up the irrefutable fact that Embiid is currently having the best season among all players this season, and while players of past generations have tallied even more eye-popping numbers on the surface, given the talent overflow in today’s game, one can argue about Embiid turning in a more impressive individual campaign.
To be frank, the only knack on Embiid this season is availability, as he’s already missed seven out of 33 games. The 76ers have gone 2-5 in those outings, a bold reflection of his sheer importance on both ends for the team.
As Beverley said, as long as Embiid keeps this up, there shouldn’t be any contest, which speaks volumes considering the slew of players who are each posting mind-boddling seasons of their own for their respective teams.
Unfortunately for them, there’s no beating what the league’s biggest realist is pegging the best individual season in the history of basketball.