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NBA: Joel Embiid was ‘shocked’ with Doc Rivers’ firing amid potential trade rumors


Joel Embiid was ‘shocked’ by Doc Rivers’ firing amid potential trade rumors beginning to loom over the future of ‘frustrated’ 76ers stars

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Joel Embiid was ‘shocked’ by Doc Rivers’ firing amid potential trade rumors beginning to swirl over the 76ers star’s future, with reports also suggesting James Harden could also be set to leave Philadelphia.

“I’m here to tell you now, Joel Embiid wasn’t happy Doc Rivers was fired. Not from everything I hear, and I worked in Philadelphia for 17 years, and I still know a lot of people within the Philadelphia 76ers organization. I can’t guess. I’m telling you,’ ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith said ahead of Tuesday’s NBA Draft lottery.

Sixers general manager Daryl Morey was asked about Smith’s comments on Wednesday and the longtime NBA executive confirmed the center’s frustration with the decision.

“They had a solid relationship,” Morey said. “I have to make tough calls all the time with rallies that disappointed Joel… I think it’s natural to be really close to people in the locker room. He was very close to Coach Rivers and was shocked by the change.

“It’s my job to help convince him that the new coach is someone he will have a great relationship with.”

Philadelphia center and franchise player Joel Embiid weren’t happy with Doc Rivers’ firing

Smith also suggested that Harden could be behind the Sixers hierarchy’s choice to part ways with Rivers and that the next head coach could determine Embiid’s future with the franchise.

“If (Mike) D’Antoni is the next head coach because we all know that’s what James Harden wants, and Daryl Morey is the person to give him exactly what he wants,” said Smith.

“If that were to happen, imagine how ridiculous it is. Joel Embiid is the league’s reigning MVP, a 7-foot-1 giant, one of the most talented big men we’ve ever seen. obviously the face of the franchise, but the franchise would capitulate to James Harden.

In order to seek new pastures, Embiid would have to submit a formal trade request to the 76ers front office, unlike Harden, who would have to be a free agent this offseason if he opts out of his sophomore option and has been linked with a return to the Rockets.

On Tuesday, Smith discussed the recent layoffs of several NBA head coaches since the playoffs began in April.

“If Mike D’Antoni ends up getting the 76ers job with Mark Jackson, Monty Williams, Nick Nurse and Mike Budenholzer available – if Mike D’Antoni gets the job, if that happens – James Harden has gone to get Doc Rivers fired. Remember I said that,’ ESPN NBA analyst ‘First Take’ said.

More soon…

Merry C. Vega is a highly respected and accomplished news author. She began her career as a journalist, covering local news for a small-town newspaper. She quickly gained a reputation for her thorough reporting and ability to uncover the truth.

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