Joel Embiid, 76ers
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76ers superstar Joel Embiid reacts to winning first NBA MVP award

After finishing runner-up for the NBA MVP award the last two straight seasons, Philadelphia 76ers star big man Joel Embiid finally earned the prestigious honor.

Embiid won the award by garnering 73 of the 100 possible first-place votes. He ranks ahead of Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic and Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo.


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“It’s hard to win this league; it’s hard to be successful in this league,” Embiid said after Philadelphia’s shootaround at TD Garden ahead of Wednesday’s Game 2 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Celtics via ESPN. “There’s a reason why these are the best basketball players in the world. And to be sitting here and feel like I won something as far as the Most Valuable Player is great. But then again, it’s also part of my story because I’ve always felt like I was a role model — especially to my Cameroonian people and my African people — and I feel like, just looking at my story, they can look at it and be like, ‘Wow, he did it.'”

Embiid put together another impressive campaign, leading the league for the second straight year in scoring with 33.1 points. As well as that, he had 10.2 rebounds while shooting 54.8% from the floor. He anchored the 76ers earning the third overall playoff spot in the Eastern Conference behind a 54-28 record.

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The 29-year-old becomes the fifth player in 76ers’ history to earn the award alongside Allen Iverson, Julius Erving, Moses Malone, and Wilt Chamberlain. It also marked the fifth consecutive year an international player has won the award.

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