Sixers' Joel Embiid named All-Star starter for third consecutive season

Sixers' Joel Embiid named All-Star starter for third consecutive season

Joel Embiid is again one of the 10 best players in the NBA, according to fans, a panel of media members and his fellow players.

The Sixers’ center was named an All-Star starter on Thursday for the third consecutive season.

Starters were determined by the votes of fans (50 percent weight), media members (25 percent) and players (25 percent). 

Embiid has averaged 23.4 points, 12.3 rebounds and 3.3 assists per game for the 29-17 Sixers. He’s been sidelined for the past eight games with a torn ligament in the ring finger of his left hand. If Embiid is unable to play in the All-Star Game, which will take place on Feb. 16 in Chicago, then Commissioner Adam Silver will select an injury replacement. 

Though his scoring is down from last season, the Sixers have still been a much better team with Embiid on the floor than with him off it.

He’s second in the NBA in defensive win shares per game and fourth in defensive rebounding percentage (minimum 20 games played, 15 minutes per game). Lineups with Embiid have a 99.5 defensive rating, while lineups without him are at 106.9. 

It’s been an eventful year so far for Embiid, who’s been suspended for a fight and subsequent social media barbs, called load management “BS,” publicly grappled with questions about how to balance maturity and dominance, and sustained a nauseating injury.

Though the Cameroonian big man has said he cares most about being healthy and at his best for the playoffs, he now has another personal accolade.

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NBA All-Star voting 2020: Where Sixers' Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons stand as fan voting nears end

NBA All-Star voting 2020: Where Sixers' Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons stand as fan voting nears end

With fan voting set to end on Monday for the 2020 NBA All-Star Game, the Sixers' Joel Embiid sits third among Eastern Conference frontcourt players and Ben Simmons is eight among guards.

Below are returns from the Western Conference.

Pascal Siakam passed Embiid over the last week. Of course, Embiid suffered a torn ligament in his left ring finger on Jan. 6. He had surgery Friday and did non-contact drills following practice on Thursday.

If Embiid is selected for the All-Star Game and not able to play, Commissioner Adam Silver will name an injury replacement.

Embiid is a two-time All-Star starter, while Simmons is hoping for a second straight selection.

Fan voting has a 50 percent weight in deciding All-Star starters, with the votes of a panel of media members and players each accounting for 25 percent. All-Star reserves are decided by coaches' voting.

Starters will be named next Thursday, and reserves will be named a week later. The All-Star Game will be on Feb. 16 in Chicago.



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NBA All-Star voting 2020: Ben Simmons isn't getting much respect

NBA All-Star voting 2020: Ben Simmons isn't getting much respect

All-Star games and All-Star voting aren't usually focused on defense.

That fact is reflected in the second returns from fan voting for this year's game, which show Ben Simmons is currently eighth among Eastern Conference guards. Joel Embiid remains second among East frontcourt players, well below reigning MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo and just ahead of fellow Cameroonian Pascal Siakam.

Though Simmons is not putting up robust scoring numbers in his third healthy NBA season (14.9 points per game) or taking many jump shots, he's fourth in assists per game with 8.6. He's also a highly versatile defender who's come through with important defensive plays in the clutch, and is first in the league in steals per game (minimum 10 games played).

Along with being behind players like the injured Kyrie Irving and sixth man Derrick Rose, Simmons has fewer votes than both Tacko Fall and Alex Caruso, players with passionate cult followings.

Fan voting is given a 50 percent weight in determining All-Star starters, with the voting of players and a panel of media members each weighted at 25 percent.

All-Star reserves are decided by coaches' voting.

Fan voting ends on Jan. 20. Starters will be named on Jan. 23, and the reserves a week later. The All-Star Game will take place on Feb. 16 in Chicago. 



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