The Philadelphia 76ers have agreed to a five year deal with Joel Embiid worth $148M. He has signed the max contract of the rookie scale extension which has some people delighted and some people furious. This may seem like an odd time to give Joel Embiid an extension, considering that they could have easily tried to give him a new contract after this season, but the 76ers were dead set on getting the contract done. Joel Embiid has shown unbelievable promise when he’s on the floor but has had a lot of trouble with injuries in his career.
The good thing about the contract is that there is not as much guaranteed money as maybe there would be if this deal was done at the end of the season, but the bad thing is that it could also be guaranteeing him way too much if he gets injured again.
I would love to see Joel Embiid thrive and have this deal be great for the 76ers, I think anyone would. Joel is the type of guy you want to build a franchise around. He’s an electrifying player with a magnetic personality that is smart, funny, and extremely nice. When he’s on the court he’s been fantastic, I mean, he averages 20.2 points as well as 7.8 rebounds and 2.5 blocks all while only averaging 25.4 minutes per game. That’s a little over one half of basketball. If you average playing in one half of basketball for 31 games in 3 years, that means you’re averaging playing 5 entire games a year. Giving a guy $25.3M next season when he only averages playing 5 games overall a year is kinda crazy. He’s averaged playing one-half of 10 games in an 82-game season. Does that seem worth $25.3M to you?
What the 76ers are hoping for is Joel Embiid to have a monster year completely devoid of injury. If he can stay on the court there is little doubt that he will be a problem for any opposing team. He just needs to stay healthy and then this deal makes a lot of sense. In fact, it’s smart of the 76ers to lock him up early if they really see him being healthy for the next five years.
However, it’s incredibly hard to see him being healthy for five years straight when he hasn’t been healthy at all during his entire NBA career.
When you’re a basketball team and you have a star player, I get doing whatever you can to lock them down. In today’s league, it has become very difficult to keep a star happy and to stop him from joining a super team at the first opportunity he gets. So locking down Embiid before he can even have the chance to run to another city makes a little sense, but it’s hard to say that when he hasn’t been worth keeping on the bench as an injured man for the past three season. I love Joel Embiid and I love the 76ers exciting young core, I just hope they don’t blow it like they have so many times before.