Lakers News: Joel Embiid Calls LeBron James Best Player In NBA; Appreciates Being Drafted First In All-Star Game
(Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)

The 2022-23 season has been one of the most exciting ones in recent memory given how many teams have a legitimate shot at winning the championship.

The Milwaukee Bucks and Boston Celtics are the cream of the crop in the NBA right now, while the Denver Nuggets have a sizable lead in the standings in the Western Conference. Outside of them, the Philadelphia 76ers should also be considered a serious threat especially because of how well Joel Embiid is playing.

Embiid is having a career year for the 76ers which made him a no-brainer pick as a start for the 2023 NBA All-Star Game. In fact, the Philadelphia superstar was Los Angeles star LeBron James’ first pick as a starter for the game.

Embiid should feel validated being picked by James, who he later called the best player in the league since he’s entered it, via Melissa Rohlin of Fox Sports:

“The best player in the NBA, since he has been in the league for 20 years, he shows you that — and that’s someone that’s extremely smart, that knows basketball, you know, one of the smartest players ever,” Embiid told FOX Sports.

” … Often you hear the media [say] this guy, that guy is better. And then I end up not being a starter, which is cool. But then again, someone like that comes out and picks you first. I mean, it shows you that maybe some of the guys that are saying that stuff and voting, they may be wrong.”

It’s high praise for James to be called the best player in the league by one of his peers, though it’s not completely unwarranted given what he’s been able to do in Year 20. James remains a top-notch scorer but has also been just as devastating as a passer and playmaker. Although the Los Angeles Lakers are fighting for a playoff spot, James has been just as good as ever.

However, the Lakers are stuck without James for the time being as he recovers from a right foot tendon strain. Despite that, Los Angeles has high hopes of making the postseason and Darvin Ham’s already emphasized that their mission hasn’t changed even without James available.

Dennis Schroder says Lakers will make 2023 NBA Playoffs

Even though James is out, the purple and gold have enough talent to compete with any team. The Lakers need to remain confident in their ability, and Dennis Schroder hammered that point home when he proclaimed they would make the postseason.

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