As much heat as Markelle Fultz has been getting this year, he’s pretty lucky at the success the 76ers have been having. Despite his weird, depressing saga, the 76ers have had encouraging success and it’s been a ton of fun.
Here’s Embiid’s entire quote.
It’s hard to disagree with what Embiid is saying, because he’s been through a tumultuous rookie year and frustrating recovery process. It’s hard to determine where the blame for Fultz falls, especially because it ultimately can come to no one but Fultz, but the details about his inner circle seem a little ominous.
Kyle Neubeck from the Philly Voice wrote an extensive piece on Fultz’ recovery and the surrounding mystery.
It’s all worth a read, but the first paragraph is particularly telling.
On a blustery winter night in the middle of January, Markelle Fultz is working. Sixteen miles from Philadelphia’s gorgeous, state-of-the-art practice facility in Camden, the No. 1 overall pick is in a high school gym, putting in extra work away from the team. He is in sweatpants and flanked by a couple confidants, one of whom holds three different sized balls for Fultz to use while going through various shooting motions.
There is something about this scene that an average bystander would not comprehend: The Sixers have no knowledge this workout is taking place, or that one of the men involved in the intimate session was working with Fultz when his shot went off the rails in the first place.
Fultz is working his ass off but he’s got a little quicksand thing going on; the more time he puts in the gym, the more confused his shot gets.
Maybe Lightswitch Lou is right. Maybe the Sixers need to shut down Fultz, not just from playing in games, but completely. Just get him away from basketball so he can rid his head of all that noise.
It is good to see that Embiid has his back. It’s encouraging to see that the team doesn’t hold his mental issues against him. But, after all, winning so damn much makes it a lot easier.
Joel Embiid is the best center in the NBA.
And the best trash talker in the NBA.
The best teammate in the NBA.
AND he gives the best post game interviews.
And all of this is from one night. He is a content machine. A one man news cycle. And we are blessed to have him.