Joel Embiid OKs five-year, $148M deal with Sixers


For all his promise, Embiid was only recently cleared for 5-on-5 activity and hasn't taken the court for Philly's preseason games.

Since being drafted by Philadelphia with the No. 3 pick in 2014, Embiid's career has been hindered by injuries. Embiid and the Sixers agreed on a $148 million, five-year extension and it could increase even more if the 7-foot centre reaches certain incentives.

Oft-injured 23-year-old center Joel Embiid - who has played just 31 games through the first three years of his National Basketball Association career after also missing the 2014 Big 12 and NCAA Tournaments because of a back injury suffered in a one-and-done college season at Kansas - on Monday agreed in principle to a 5-year, $148 million designated rookie scale maximum contract extension, ESPN reported.

Regardless, he's likely to face some sort of minutes restriction, and Embiid, himself, admitted that it's unlikely he plays in all 82 games this season, even if he stays healthy.

Embiid's potential was on full display last season when he earned a first-team All-Rookie nod with 20.2 points, 7.8 rebounds and 2.5 blocks per game.

There is no doubt about Embiid's talent. If Embiid's body continues to fall apart and they waive him, are they still on the hook for 75 percent of the contract?

The Sixers will get some salary-cap protection should the center miss significant playing time because of injuries. Embiid was last year's leading scorer and dubbed his own nickname "The Process" after the Sixers slogan in the years they were tanking.

However, this means that an unhealthy Embiid would make $74 million on a five-year deal.

Since Embiid has displayed his loyalty to the organization and the Sixers have rewarded Embiid with this hefty contract.

Joel Embiid just got paid. The track record of injury-prone big men is littered with torn ligaments and broken dreams, and Embiid has already had several serious setbacks. He would have been a restricted free agent after the 2017-18 season had he not reached agreement with Philly by the October 16 deadline.

Yet the 23-year-old was not without flaws offensively. Maybe the Sixers have no real shot at LeBron James, but internally, they want their foundation set and their books in order when the time comes to go after players like him. Last season, he suffered a knee injury that ended his season prematurely.