Why Joel Embiid deserves to be in forefront of MVP conversation

Joel Embiid, 76ers, Nets, NBA Trade Rumors, Rockets, Jazz
Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

Defensive Impact From Joel Embiid

Joel Embiid has proven that he’s not just a force with the ball in his hands, but that he’s also a force defensively. Embiid is one of the most feared shot blockers in the NBA with a commanding presence in the paint. That will play a huge role in his MVP campaign.

To go along with his outstanding scoring numbers, Joel Embiid averaged 10.7 rebounds per game, 1.3 steals per game, 1.2 blocks per game, and just 2.4 fouls per game. He’s also holding opponents to a -7.9% worse field goal percentage compared to their typical results.

It doesn’t take long to notice that Joel Embiid’s size and wingspan makes it extremely hard to score against him. He can absorb body contact and has the length to alter shots. His lack of fouling opponents makes him a frustrating interior battle for teams to plan against.

Joel Embiid deserves the MVP award for a variety of reasons, but his versatility on the defensive side of the ball to go along with his outstanding scoring ability makes him a one of a kind player.