Joel Embiid Prefers Football Over NBA After Missing Games

Embiid's Unique Perspective on Sports and Teamwork.

by Faizan Chaudhary
Joel Embiid Prefers Football Over NBA After Missing Games
© Andy Lyons/Getty Images

In his eighth remarkable season with the Philadelphia 76ers, Joel Embiid continues to showcase his extraordinary basketball prowess. However, amidst his stellar performance, critics have not been oblivious to the fact that he has missed 12 games this season.

Following his absence from two consecutive games since the Thursday night clash that resulted in a 134-122 loss against the Indiana Pacers, Joel Embiid made a surprising revelation about his passion for football. During an interview on the Men in Blazers podcast, Joel Embiid expressed his deep love for football in unequivocal terms.

Despite holding a prestigious position as one of the NBA's premier basketball talents, Embiid's affection for one of the world's most popular sports remains unwavering.

Embiid's Football Passion

"I'd rather be a football player than a basketball player," asserted Embiid, emphasizing the profound adoration he holds for football.

"That's how much I love it. Football, to me, is unparalleled in its global significance. There's simply nothing that compares. I'm drawn to the concept of teamwork. In basketball, two exceptional players can carry a team to victory, but in football, the cohesion of the entire team is paramount." Football, much like basketball, prioritizes collective effort over individual excellence.

This parallel becomes evident when considering that both sports involve teams of five players competing against an opposing five-man unit on the field or court. During the same interview on the Men in Blazers podcast, Joel Embiid delved into the origins of his profound love for football, tracing it back to his childhood.

"Football was my first love," disclosed Embiid. "To be honest, I adore football more than basketball. I'm a passionate fan. My formative years were spent in Italy, where from ages six to fourteen, I played soccer every single day.

It's actually my favorite sport." Embiid further elaborated on how football influenced his development, emphasizing the significant role it played in honing his footwork and hand-eye coordination. These skills acquired from football have seamlessly integrated into his basketball repertoire, contributing to his current status as one of the sport's most dominant players.

The results of this unique blend of sports passion and skill are undeniable. This season, Joel Embiid has been nothing short of sensational, boasting impressive averages of 36.0 points per game on 53.9% shooting (including 36.8% from beyond the arc), along with 11.4 rebounds and 5.8 assists per game.

His on-court performance and statistics underscore the synergy between his love for football and his basketball prowess, making him a force to be reckoned with in the NBA.

Joel Embiid