If Joel Embiid hadn’t continued to persevere and work on his game after the death of his brother Arthur, he might have never been able to win an MVP award. As we all know, Embiid has been playing at a historic level this season with the Philadelphia 76ers and finally managed to win the 2022-2023 NBA MVP award as a result. This speaks to the work and effort he put into his game as well as his innate potential.
However, none of this would have been realized if Embiid let the tragic passing of his younger brother deter him. He once revealed that it pushed him to a limit where he was reconsidering his own career and life choices. Let us take a closer look and find out more on this subject.
The loss of his brother deterred Joel Embiid from playing
The loss of his younger brother Arthur Embiid impacted Joel in a way that very few people are capable of understanding. To those who do not know, Arthur died at the young age of 13 in Cameroon. According to the reports, he was killed in an accident when walking back home with his friends from school.
The tragic death occurred in 2014, just a few months after Embiid was drafted into the league with the 3rd pick by the Philadelphia 76ers. At the time Joel found out about his brother’s passing, he was also dealing with severe injuries and was unable to step out on the court for his team.
That along with the fact that he was very close to his younger brother put him in a bad place mentally speaking. Embiid even questioned whether he should continue to play basketball or just quit and go back home to his family.
“So I just pushed on. A lot of days, it sucked. A lot of days, I just wanted get on a flight back home. I wanted to quit, but I just kept putting in the work everyday for two years to try to get healthy, to try to get better, to try to take one step onto an NBA court. I felt like if I did that, then my brother would be really proud of me.”
Joel Embiid reflects on his journey to becoming an MVP after losing his brother:
“I always say my life is a movie. There’s a reason for it. … The way to kind of make [my brother] proud was to come back and work as hard as I can.” @malika_andrews pic.twitter.com/0gAuvPKKyY
— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) May 3, 2023
Upon hearing this, we can’t help but feel a sense of admiration towards Embiid. From struggling to get on the court to become the MVP within less than a decade of that, there is no denying that his growth in the league has been very impressive.