Joel Embiid (29, Philadelphia), who finished second for the past two seasons in a row in the MVP vote in the NBA regular season, has the trophy this time. This is his first award since his NBA debut.
As a result of the MVP vote announced by the NBA Secretariat on the 3rd, Embiid scored a total of 915 points, beating Nikola Jokic (Denver, 674 points), who challenged to win the award for three consecutive seasons. Yokichi tried to win the 4th consecutive MVP Award after Wilt Chamberlain (1961-1963), Bill Russell (1966-1968), and Larry Bird (1984-1986), but failed. Giannis Antetokounmpo (Milwaukee), who was among the three finalists for MVP, scored 606 points. The MVP was selected by a vote of 100 American and Canadian media reporters and broadcasters who cover the NBA, and 73 voted for Embiid (10 points per vote). Jokichi received 15 first place votes and Antetokounmpo received 12.
As can be seen 크크크벳 from the difference in the number of first place votes, there were many who expected Embiid to win the MVP award this season. At the end of the season, players representing the NBA such as Stephen Curry (Golden State) and Jimmy Butler (Miami) openly expressed their opinion that ‘MVP should be awarded to Embiid’. When Embiid led the team to victory with 52 points and 13 rebounds against Boston on the 5th of last month, Philadelphia coach Doc Rivers declared, “The competition for MVP is over.”
Embiid watched the MVP announcement on TV in a hotel room with his teammates in the second round of the Eastern Conference playoffs (PO) with Boston. When his name was called, Embiid burst into tears and his teammates shouted “MVP! MVP!” he shouted. In a live interview following the MVP announcement, Embiid said, “It took a really long time to get here. It’s not just basketball, it’s about the whole life that brought me to this place as a Cameroonian.” “I started playing basketball at the age of 16 and came this far,” he said. “It was really hard and it took a lot of luck as well as hard work.”
Embiid, who was born in Yaounde, the capital of Cameroon, first caught a basketball at the age of 15 and came to the United States at the age of 16 to learn basketball properly. He was selected by Philadelphia with the third overall pick in the 2014 draft, but missed two seasons due to injuries and surgery. In the 2016-2017 season, when he debuted in the NBA, he showed impressive performance by scoring more than 20 points per game on average. He led the team in scoring last season, averaging 30.6 points. He was the ‘center scorer’ for the first time in 22 years since Shaquille O’Neal (retired) in the 1999-2000 season. Embiid, who averaged 33.1 points in 66 games this season, became the top scorer for the second year in a row. Embiid was named the second African MVP in NBA history after Hakeem Olajuwon (retired) in the 1993-1994 season. Olajuwon is from Nigeria.
Embiid, who was unable to play in the first leg of the PO round 2 against Boston on the 2nd due to a knee injury, said, “The MVP award is just a five-minute celebration with my teammates, and we have to run again for PO victory.” “There is still work to be done. I will go back.”