He’s yet to play in a game and the James Harden effect is already being felt in Philadelphia.
Harden, who was acquired at the Feb. 10 trade deadline will be sidelined through the All-Star break but has already taken part in a few practices, where he was spotted working with MVP candidate Joel Embiid on the signature stepback jumper.
NBA LEAGUE PASS: Sign up to unlock live out-of-market games (7-day free trial)
Sixers center Joel Embiid trying to James Harden’s trademark step-back move. Assistant coach Sam Cassell keeps saying Embiid is taking four steps, tho. Harden shows him how to do it with two steps. pic.twitter.com/f5l9Vq8gyn
— Keith Pompey (@PompeyOnSixers) February 15, 2022
I know what you’re thinking here. Embiid is, without a doubt, one of the most skilled centers that the game has ever seen, but he wouldn’t try the move in a game before perfecting it, right?
NBA TRADE GRADES: Did Sixers or Nets win the Ben Simmons and James Harden trade?
Ahead of halftime in the Sixers blowout loss to the Celtics, Embiid tried his hand at Harden’s signature move and it … didn’t go so well.
Joel Embiid tried to do James Harden’s step back move that he learned in practice Monday and got called for the travel. 😂🤣#76ers pic.twitter.com/Ej1c4h3iLS
— Saheel Momin (@sm_reports) February 16, 2022
Just as assistant coach Sam Cassell told him in the above practice footage, Embiid takes one too many steps on his stepback and, as a result, is whistled for a travel.
MORE: James Harden says 76ers were his preferred destination over Nets last season
To add insult to injury, the move wasn’t even that effective, as Celtics center Al Horford managed to block the attempt that wouldn’t have counted anyway.
Given Embiid’s skill level and advanced footwork, it’s only a matter of time before he actually does manage to nail the move, but given the fact he’s leading the league in scoring without a stepback 3-pointer in his arsenal, it might be best he leaves it to Harden.
Leave a Reply