The Sixers' and league's reigning MVP has missed the last couple of games with an ankle injury, however, it does not seem overly concerning for the big man. And if Joel Embiid needs a break, it is more than understandable following his absurd play in the month of December. Let's dive into the stats.
Naturally, the most eye-popping statistic is the points this month. In December, Embiid is averaging 40.2 points per game. Within that 9-game span, he also has two games of 50 or more points. Embiid has been dominant on the offensive end of the floor; so much so that Bill Simmons said this.
What can't Joel Embiid do?
Embiid's points are just the tip of the iceberg though. He has been impressively active on the glass averaging 12.6 rebounds per game in December, which is an area of his game where he does not always show effort. Finish it off with 5 assists per game and there is no question that Embiid is currently the MVP for the second straight season.
With all the scoring by Embiid, he must be putting up a bunch of shots right? Actually, would it surprise you by this point that in December he has been remarkably efficient? He is shooting 60.6% from the field and 42.3% from three-point range! Those numbers are not from Steph Curry or Kevin Durant. Those numbers are from a Center who plays for the Philadelphia 76ers. The throwaway line here is that he is also shooting 92.1% from the free-throw line. These percentages are ridiculous and Embiid is still finding ways to get better.
If you are at this point in the article, you must be thinking what else could there be for Embiid to be excelling at? He is now targeting the records of great big men. Embiid has an active streak of 13 consecutive games of 30 or more points and 10 or more rebounds. That is tied for the 8th longest streak in the history of the NBA and the only players above him on the list are Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Wilt Chamberlain. To Bill Simmons' point earlier, not even Shaq had a streak this long.