Embiid: 'I'm not a two-time MVP, why is pressure on me?'


Joel Embiid took a not-so-subtle shot at Nikola Jokic in a new story released by Shams Charania of The Athletic on Monday morning, hours before the top two MVP candidates face each other in Denver.

"People have been talking about who has the most pressure to win," Embiid said when asked if he goes into this postseason with a title-or-bust mentality. "People want to mention me. I’m not at the top of that list. I’m not a two-time MVP, I’ve never made first team All-NBA, I’ve never won anything. So why is there pressure on me to do something when there are guys that have won two MVPs, a bunch of MVPs and haven’t done anything either?"

Embiid has publicly praises Jokic in the past, often stating how much respect he has for the Nuggets big man and two-time defending MVP. Having said that, Embiid has been snubbed for some awards thanks in large part to Jokic and you have to believe Embiid feels he is the better player.

Embiid is 5-2 vs. Jokic in his career, none bigger than earlier this season when Embiid had 47 points, 18 rebounds, and 5 assists in a 126-119 Sixers win over the Nuggets on January 28th at the Wells Fargo Center.

Embiid, who is leading the NBA in scoring for the second straight season (33.3 PPG) is now -145 on FanDuel to win this year's MVP, while Jokic is the second favorite at +195 to win his third straight (Giannis is a distant third at +500).

"The criteria does change," Embiid told The Athletic when asked about the MVP award. "If we want to talk about the last three years since I’ve been in the running for it, the first year it was that I didn’t play enough games. Last year, I came back, I played enough games, I led the league in scoring, and obviously, Nikola deserved it and he won it. But then again, he won as a sixth seed in the West. And then this year, I’m leading the league in scoring, I’m doing all of these things defensively… I should be making an All-Defensive team too. I don’t care, but every year it’s something."

The Sixers, who have lost two in a row, finish up a four-game road trip tonight in Denver against Jokic and the Nuggets. James Harden, who has missed three straight games, is expected to return while Woj reports (1:57pm) Embiid will NOT play due to calf tightness

Listen live to 94WIP via:
Audacy App | Online Stream Smart Speaker

Featured Image Photo Credit: GettyImages