Sixers in awe of Joel Embiid’s impact despite rough shooting night

PHILADELPHIA–Rough shooting nights happen in the NBA, but when Philadelphia 76ers star Joel Embiid goes through one, it is a huge surprise due to the efficient standard that he has set on a regular basis.

Embiid entered Thursday night’s contest with the Memphis Grizzlies shooting 53.7% from the floor, but he had a rough night against the physical Grizzlies. He shot just 2-for-14 in the first half on his way to just 7-for-25 for the game, but still managed to score 27 points with 19 rebounds, six assists, and six blocks in a 110-105 win for the Sixers.

When considering the fact that Philadelphia was trailing by as many as 17 and Embiid was struggling the way he was, it was a surprising win, but the big fella still had an incredible impact in the comeback.

“It should change the tone about him,” said coach Doc Rivers. “Not in the huddle, but outwardly. Joel is a two-way player. If you take away what someone does best, what else can they do to help the team? We ask our guys that every night. If you took away his offense, what else did he do? Well, he had six blocks, he had 19 rebounds, he had six assists. That tells you how great the guy is.”

The fact that Embiid was able to put his fingerprints on this one despite having a tough night on the offensive end is impressive. His defensive effort saved the Sixers a lot in the win on Thursday. Especially, his block on Grizzlies star Ja Morant that seemed to demoralize Memphis.

“I take pride in that,” said Embiid. “I always say defense is more important for me than offense. Even tonight (Thursday), I could not make any shots, especially the ones that I make, but defensively I thought I had to be Bill Russell to be able to kind of balance it out. As a team, I thought we did a great job so we just gotta keep going.”

Nights like Thursday will happen to anybody. Even a guy like Embiid. The great ones will find a way to impact the game and be able to push the team in the right direction as the big fella did against the Grizzlies.

“That’s what it’s about,” said James Harden after he scored 31 points in the win. “We got enough guys that can score the basketball. Bad shooting nights are gonna happen. It’s what you can do to impact the game and tonight (Thursday), Joel was a great example of that.”

Now, the Sixers have to keep things going in the right direction when they face the Boston Celtics at home on Saturday.


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Story originally appeared on Sixers Wire