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Joel Embiid dazzles in NBA Africa Game

You can never have too many guys 6’10” or taller capable of playing point guard.

NBA: Playoffs-Miami Heat at Philadelphia 76ers Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Pending the final results of the Markelle Fultz shooting restoration project, Sixers fans are already on standby to build a statue outside the Wells Fargo Center honoring trainer Drew Hanlen. However, Hanlen also appears to be doing some mighty fine work with Fultz’s teammate, Joel Embiid. Back on Wednesday, Hanlen tweeted out a video comparing Embiid to Hakeem Olajuwon, while including the hashtag #pointcenter:

Yesterday, in the 2018 NBA Africa Game, we got to see the point center in action, and as Mugatu would say, “Dear God, it’s beautiful.”

Embiid was already one of the most dominating presences in the league, and now he’s out there with the ball on a string like a 7-foot Kyrie Irving. I doubt he breaks out the And-1 mixtape moves during actual NBA games, but it feels like that mark of 3.7 turnovers per game has a good chance of coming down.

The Sixers star center goes out and has a lot of fun in the public eye, as any 24-year-old has every right to do. But let’s never forget he has also always made a point to put in those long hours in the gym to improve his craft, as we see when he provides these flashes of new abilities on the court. Can October hurry up and get here?

Overall in the exhibition game, Embiid led all scorers with 24 points, adding 8 rebounds and 4 assists. Unfortunately for the crowd in attendance in South Africa, Embiid’s comeback efforts weren’t quite enough, and his Team Africa fell to Team World, 96-92. Looking back, how great is it that we’re now so secure about the big man’s health that playing in an exhibition game isn’t even given a second thought? Thank you, fine doctors of Qatar!

Of course, in the middle of all his hard work, Embiid hasn’t lost his trademark sense of humor.

The NBA’s Last Two-Minute Report said the referees should have called a foul on Aron Baynes, but it’s refreshing to see Embiid out there taking some jabs at himself and accepting responsibility. That’s our superstar. Don’t worry, Joel, I think you just might have a chance to redeem yourself come springtime.

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