Joel Embiid, Georges Niang

Joel Embiid plans to come to Philly, eat a cheesesteak. And round out his game.


Joel Embiid is coming to Philadelphia and the man has priorities, as he said in a conference call as reported by’s John Finger.

“I like food, so the Philly Cheesesteak, I’m already on that,” Embiid said during a conference call on Monday. “As soon as I get there, that’s the first thing I’m getting.”

I like a man with his priorities in the right place — you want to get to know a culture, a city, then eat their food. Probably don’t want to eat too many of those until you can start working out again, though.

Of course, Embiid is coming to Philadelphia to play basketball, the Sixers used the No. 3 pick to take the athletic center out of Kansas. Embiid was expected to go No.1 to the Cavaliers until he was diagnosed with a broken navicular bone in his foot that required surgery and two screws to set it. Embiid fell, but not far because the potential — the reward was worth the risk to GM Sam Hinkie. He’s right. If you’re going to be a title contender you need to take a couple big swings in the draft.

If you’re a Sixers fan you had to like what Embiid said on that conference call about rounding out his game.

“I want to be a complete player, so I’m going to work on everything — rebounding passing, handling, shooting,” Embiid said. “I want to be the kind of player that can do everything on the offensive end and defensive ends of the floor.”

He said he wants his game to resemble Hakeem Olajuwon, reports Gordie Jones at

“Just the way he moves,” Embiid said on a conference call with reporters Monday, four days after the Sixers made him the third pick in the NBA draft. “It’s kind of like he’s dancing.”

Those are lofty, lofty goals. But before your career starts is the time to dream big.

Sixers fans would take 80 percent of that dream career and be happy. It would mean a lot of wins.

Chris Paul, after breaking finger, intends to play in Clippers preseason game tomorrow

Chris Paul
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Chris Paul broke his finger Saturday.

The initial diagnosis said the injury wasn’t serious.

Here’s confirmation.

Ben Bolch of the Los Angeles Times:

Paul obviously wouldn’t push it during the preseason. If the Clippers are allowing him to play, this can’t be bad.

Really, the most challenging aspect to this is grasping the concept that a broke finger can be a minor injury.

Report: David Lee, Tyler Zeller in line to start for Celtics; Jared Sullinger, Jonas Jerebko out of rotation

MADRID, SPAIN - OCTOBER 08: David Lee of Boston Celtics attacks during the friendlies of the NBA Global Games 2015 basketball match between Real Madrid and Boston Celtics at Barclaycard Center on October 8, 2015 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)
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Brad Stevens has a big challenge this year – sorting the Celtics’ deep roster of similarly able players.

It seems that process is shaking out at power forward and center.

A. Sherrod Blakely of CSN Northeast:

it appears Boston’s first four bigs will be starters David Lee and Tyler Zeller, with Amir Johnson and Kelly Olynyk off the bench.

That leaves Jonas Jerebko and Jared Sullinger, potentially on the outside looking in as far as the regular rotation is concerned.

Lee is the best passer of the bunch, which could partially explain why he’s starting. Boston’s most likely starting point guard, Marcus Smart, is still growing into the role of the lead ball-handler at the NBA level. Lee and presumptive starting shooting guard Avery Bradley can take some pressure off him.

Olynyk can space the floor for Isaiah Thomas-Johnson pick-and-rolls with the reserves and run pick-and-pops with Thomas himself.

I’m a little surprised Zeller is starting over Johnson, though. The Celtics just signed Johnson to a $12 million salary, and I thought they’d rely on his defense to set a tone early. Like Johnson, Zeller is a quality pick-and-roll finisher who can thrive with Thomas.

This is particularly bad news for Sullinger, who – barring a surprising contract extension – is entering a contract year. It seems those reports of offseason conditioning haven’t yet paid off. Jerebko’s deal also isn’t guaranteed beyond this season, but at least he has already gotten his mid-sized payday. Sullinger is still on his rookie-scale contract.