76ers president Daryl Morey blames ‘shameless Boston media’ for Joel Embiid’s All-Star starter snub
Joel Embiid narrowly missed being named an All-Star Game starter, ending a 5-year streak in the Eastern Conference
Philadelphia 76ers star Joel Embiid wasn’t named an All-Star Game starter on Thursday night, and Daryl Morey knows exactly who to blame.
The Sixers president of basketball operations went off on the “shameless Boston media” in a radio appearance on Friday morning.
"Completely hosed once again," Morey said on 97.5 The Fanatic. "This time, to your point, the perpetrators of the crime were the shameless media, who most of them have recused themselves because they don't want the vote on something that affect players' paychecks.
"But the shameless Boston media is way overrepresented. They haven't recused themselves, and they shoved Joel low enough so that he's not an All-Star starter. It's crazy."
The NBA released starters on Thursday night for this year’s All-Star Game in Salt Lake City. Fan voting accounted for 50% of the final vote, while media votes and player votes accounted for the other 50%.
Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo was named the Eastern Conference captain after receiving more than 6.7 million fan votes and 220 player votes, narrowly edging Brooklyn Nets star Kevin Durant. Jayson Tatum, Kyrie Irving and Donovan Mitchell then rounded out the East starters.
LeBron James was named the Western Conference captain, marking a record-tying 19th appearance in the game for the Los Angeles Lakers star.
Embiid, who had been named a starter for five straight All-Star teams, did not make the cut. He finished third in the Eastern Conference frontcourt player and media voting, and fourth in the fan voting.
It’s not like Embiid isn’t having an MVP-caliber season. The 28-year-old is averaging a league-best 33.4 points per game along with 9.8 rebounds and 4.1 assists for the 76ers. Philadelphia has lost just once in January, too, and sits just 2.5 games back of the first-place Celtics in the Eastern Conference standings.
Now, it’s hard to back up Morey’s claim that it was the “shameless Boston media” who kept Embiid out of the starting lineup. If that’s the case, one would think that Celtics guard Jaylen Brown would have beaten out either Mitchell or Irving for a starting spot, too. Brown, instead, finished third among the East guards.
While it’s unclear how Embiid feels about his “snub,” Morey is livid. Their next matchup in Boston on Feb. 8 is sure to be entertaining.