Does Sixers' Joel Embiid need to protect himself better on the court?

Does Sixers' Joel Embiid need to protect himself better on the court?

There are a lot of words to describe Sixers center Joel Embiid. Amazing. Uncanny. Special.

Lately, a few others are coming to mind. How 'bout injury-prone? Scary? Reckless?

Embiid hasn't played in 11 of the Sixers' last 12 games, and at this point isn't expected to return until after the NBA All-Star break. That doesn't put him back in uniform until February 25, more than a month after sustaining what was once termed a "knee contusion."

No big deal. The Sixers' playoff push was a farce anyway, and rest and recovery are what's best for Embiid right now.

The real question we should probably be asking is not when will Embiid return, but what kind of player will he be once he's back? Because just watching him for one game is enough to make a serious examination as to whether he's going to continue to put himself and his career in jeopardy on a nightly basis.

Let's go back to the tape against the Rockets (we spliced video of these plays together in a clip above).

After winning the tip, Embiid takes the pass at the top of the key, drives to the basket and dunks OVER Nene on the Sixers' opening possession. The Wells Fargo Center roars in approval as Embiid lands awakwardly on his right leg and nearly comes crashing haphazardly to the hardwood.

In the second quarter, Embiid faces up Nene, cuts across the basket and lays the ball into the hoop, but does hit the deck this time, gingerly falling to the floor on the finish. Moments later at the other end, Embiid rushes into the corner to defend Sam Dekker's three-point attempt, only to wind up in the Rockets bench.

Then in the third, Embiid skies for an alley-oop from Dario Saric, yet is brought to the ground again — hard this time — when he's fouled by Patrick Beverly. Shortly after, Embiid chases down James Harden from behind and swats away the easy slam, only his knees appear to buckle on the way down.

Fourth period, Embiid is back in the front row on defense.

That was all from the last time Embiid played a game for the Sixers, and it turns out he had a torn meniscus at the time, the result of another ugly landing. Unfortunately, it's an all-too-common occurence to see the 7-foot-2 center make an uneasy touch down or on the floor, and ever prior to his latest injury, it was quite worrisome.

Keep in mind, we're talking about one of the faces of the Sixers franchise here, a 22-year-old who missed two full seasons already because of a foot problem — albeit a freak injury, but still concerning nonetheless. Of course we love the effort, yet at this rate, how long can his body withstand these types of beatings, night in and night out?

Obviously, asking Embiid to bring that energy level down by even a notch is easier said than done. He's not a certain 6-foot guard, though, nor should he be playing like such, especially at this stage of the Sixers' rebuilding process, when so little is on the line.

The style of playing honestly is at least a little reminiscent of Allen Iverson, in terms of the seeming total disregard Embiid shows for his body. He's captivating audiences like Iverson, too.

But Embiid isn't Iverson. Big men tend to break down easier to begin with, let alone those with a history of lower-body injuries. And few if any NBA superstars took the drubbings AI did with such regularity and were still great for very long.

Ultimately, it might be Embiid's responsibility to take better care to protect himself when he's on an NBA court. You could also make the case that it's the Sixers' imperative to impart this to him, if they haven't already.

Embiid's importance to the Sixers isn't vastly different than that of Carson Wentz's to the Eagles, and how do people react any time he's exposed to an unnecessary hit? Wentz is told to get out of harm's way all the time, and peppered with questions from the media roughly every other week there's a situation when he doesn't.

Watching Embiid play like a guard in a center's body is a legitimate thrill, and the degree to which you want to see him rein it in might vary. Yet up to this point, it's a concern that doesn't seem to be getting much attention, if it's been voiced at all. If anything, people want to know when the minutes and game restrictions will be lifted.

Until he starts to show some regard for his own safety on the court, the Sixers would be best served to continue putting limitations on Embiid. The organization can't protect him forever, but until he learns to protect himself, maybe they should continue doing what they can.

New to Philly, Markelle Fultz already has his cheesesteak order down

New to Philly, Markelle Fultz already has his cheesesteak order down

Moving to a new city can be overwhelming. Markelle Fultz already has taken care of one key aspect of living in Philadelphia.

His cheesesteaks.

Fultz stamped off on Larry’s Steaks as his favorite. The Maryland native had visited Philadelphia many times before being drafted by the Sixers and had done his own scouting. 

So it wasn’t a question of where he gets his cheesesteaks, but how he orders them.

“Actually, I do it a different way,” Fultz said. “I usually get chicken and steak. I just get lettuce and a little bit of onions. Just a basic Philly cheesesteak.” 

Fultz also credited his mother for her cheesesteak savvy. 

“I’ll be stealing like half of hers,” he said. 

The Sixers provided Larry’s Steaks cheesesteaks to the media following Fultz’s introductory press conference.

Welcome to Philadelphia, Markelle Fultz.

A post shared by Jessica Camerato (@jcamerato) on

Whoops: Morgan Frost deletes harsh tweet about Flyers from past

Whoops: Morgan Frost deletes harsh tweet about Flyers from past

It's a tradition unlike any other.

After a player gets drafted, he gains thousands of new fans and new followers on social media, many of whom decide to go back in time to learn a little more. Oftentimes, these hunts through Twitter history unearth a few posts that probably should have never happened or have been deleted a long time ago.

Enter Flyers draft pick Morgan Frost.

The Flyers traded with the St. Louis Blues to select the 18-year-old Frost with the 27th overall pick in the 2017 NHL draft on Friday night and immediately, this Tweet surfaced — which has now been deleted.

Life comes at you fast, Morgan.

On that night, the Flyers lost to the Washington Capitals, 7-0, in a game that included a late melee in which Brayden Schenn, involved in this trade, received a game misconduct and goalie Ray Emery traded barbs with Braden Holtby.

In another Tweet, Frost was critical of the move the Flyers made to sign Vinny Lecavalier.

Born in Barrie, Ontario, Frost can root for any team he wants growing up and fans should probably give him some slack on these tweets surfacing, but a message to everyone on the night before you're going to get drafted: go through your feed and delete anything that could find its way onto this blog.