Joel Embiid is on the brink of playoff elimination. He has a broken face, a torn ligament in his thumb, no MVP award to put on his mantle, and doesn’t sound happy about it.
“I guess every year is all about whatever you guys decide, whatever fits the narrative as far as who’s going to win,” Embiid ranted after the Philadelphia 76ers dropped a pivotal Game 5 to the Miami Heat.
It’s the second year in a row Embiid was beaten out by Jokic for league MVP. And it’s the second time in as many months the Sixers star expressed dissatisfaction with media members for not voting for him, this time, taking specific aim at Bill Simmons.
"If you're going to allow these type of people to vote on these awards, that's not fair."
Joel Embiid discusses Bill Simmons' remark on Jalen Green and how it impacts NBA award voting. pic.twitter.com/ujYemdxYQs
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“I go back to what I saw, or what I heard on a podcast,” Embiid ranted. “About Bill Simmons basically saying—he sounded like he had a grudge against somebody saying ‘f*ck Jalen Green.’ So, if you’re going to allow these type of people to vote for these awards, that’s not fair.”
Last month, Simmons was critical of Houston Rockets rookie Jalen Green, claiming he doesn’t deserve All-Rookie honors because his team is so bad.
“F*ck Jalen Green,” Simmons said. “I don’t care you’re scoring 40 points and your team’s 19-60. Congratulations…I’m sorry. I like winning players, I’m sorry.”
After Simmons’ condemnation of Houston’s rookie, Golden State Warriors star Draymond Green put the podcast host on blast. Green took issue with Simmons being an NBA awards voter, which can financially impact a player, a sentiment Embiid echoed Tuesday night.
“What if Jalen Green was in a position to earn a supermax, or I don’t know, an All-Star appearance?” Embiid said. “And you got someone sounding like that. He has a lot of power. He can sway a lot of other media members. You got someone saying that type of stuff, I don’t think it’s fair. I don’t think it’s OK.”
Simmons could have chosen better words than “f*ck Jalen Green,” but The Ringer founder did not take a personal shot at the Houston Rockets rookie. Further, he explained why he doesn’t believe Green deserves All-Rookie honors this season.
Embiid has a lot to be frustrated about right now, marred by injuries and staring at another early playoff exit. But he admitted last month, that if he isn’t voted NBA MVP, he would feel hated by the media. And Tuesday’s rant appeared to be a culmination of those frustrations.