The evidence was irrefutable. Joel Embiid, fresh off NBA Eastern Conference Player of the Week honors, is far and away the NBA’s best rookie. He is posting numbers per 36 minutes the likes of which haven’t been seen since Wilt Chamberlain, and he has the Sixers — yes the Sixers— in contention for a playoff spot.
Oh, and he also got the third most votes from fans.
But unfortunately it wasn’t enough, as the7-foot-2 rookie was left off the team in favor of more veteran talent, like Paul Milsap and Paul George.
Embiid was snubbed for a starting role due to the new NBA formula that counts fans votes for 50 percent, player votes for 25 percent and the media for 25 percent. That anointed Jimmy Butler as the third frontcourt starter in the East.
Embiid was not surprisingly given a spot on the rising stars roster, along with fellow Sixers Jahlil Okafor and Dario Saric.
Give Embiid some credit for his social media campaign, as well as his play on the hardwood — which seemingly revolutionized the way athletes can harness the power and support of adoring fans.
He’ll just have to wait to nab his “celebrity crush” until next time.
The NBA All-Star Game takes plays on February 19 in New Orleans.