Shutdown of trolling adult film star latest example of Joel Embiid's 'swagger'

Currently, Joel Embiid is Philadelphia sports. Thanks to his big personality, dominating game, and engaging social-media skills, the Sixers rookie has quickly become one of the city’s favorite athletes.

Count Brett Brown among Embiid’s biggest fans. The Sixers coach told 94.1 WIP host Angelo Cataldi on Tuesday morning that “there is a swagger that I think [Embiid] brings to the city of Philadelphia.”

In the latest example of social-media prowess, Embiid completely shut down adult film star Mia Khalifa, who has become notorious for trolling athletes online. Khalifa took a photo of the Sixers star alongside Philly rapper Meek Mill and teammates Ben Simmons and Nerlens Noel and called it a “room full of L’s.”

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Room full of L's

A photo posted by Mia Khalifa (@notthefakemiakhalifa) on Jan 8, 2017 at 5:53pm PST


Embiid’s response was a so perfect, Khalifa had no choice but to own it.

It's hard to believe that not so long ago, a lot of fans were worried the Cameroon-born big man didn’t even want to play in Philadelphia

During the 2014 NBA draft, an unfortunate tape delay made it seem as if Embiid was unhappy to be selected by the Sixers with the third overall pick, something he discussed on Tuesday morning with 97.5 The Fanatic morning host Anthony Gargano.

“Draft night, I couldn’t get to the draft, so they had to bring the ESPN crew back to where I was in L.A.” Embiid said. “The commissioner called my name, and obviously I was happy. … But on TV there was a tape delay, so they just showed me mad.”

Embiid said the memes and jokes that were spawned on social media because of the misunderstanding were so amusing, he quickly joined in, tweeting a photo of himself to assure fans he was happy to be coming to Philadelphia.

“I think that’s when people started to figure out what I liked to do and how funny I am,” Embiid said.

Unlike many athletes, Embiid has embraced the media and is willing to get playful, as when he told Inquirer reporter Keith Pompey he wanted to become an NBA All-Star so he could go out on a date with an unspecified celebrity crush (hinted to be chart-topping singer Rihanna).  

“Sometimes athletes really keep their lives away from the fans,” Embiid says. “I like to have fun. I like to let everyone know what I’m doing.”

In a separate interview with WIP, Brown said he has been blown away by how great Embiid has been, both on and off the court.

“He is [better than I expected],” Brown said before hinting at former general manager Sam Hinkie’s controversial plan to intentionally lose games over three seasons to acquire draft assets.

“I think in Joel Embiid, you’re seeing something that reflects some of the reasons why we went through the pain that we did.”