Is healthy Zion a better talent than healthy Embiid?

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better talent

Zion
132
54%
Embiid
111
46%
 
Total votes: 243

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Re: Is healthy Zion a better talent than healthy Embiid? 

Post#101 » by NO-KG-AI » Mon Feb 17, 2020 4:53 pm

jamaalstar21 wrote:And Zion so far sucks on defense...


Based on what?
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Re: Is healthy Zion a better talent than healthy Embiid? 

Post#102 » by lordjeff05 » Mon Feb 17, 2020 5:33 pm

syntax wrote:
lordjeff05 wrote:Embiid is a beast on defense but he suffers from the same issue that Rudy Gobert has. Neither player is comfortable guarding out on the perimeter. That leaves them susceptible to stretch bigs and guards who can create their own perimeter shot off the dribble. If you force them to switch, they are in trouble.


Hangon, you're saying that because Gobert blocks 2 shots a game and have the Jazz 8th in defensive rating (Sixers are 4th in defensive rating) that these big men are somehow a liability to their team on defense?


Yes, in the playoffs they can be. During the regular season ICE coverage with a decent rim protector is going to provide decent defense. When you combine long wings with excellent rim protectors, like the Jazz and Sixers have, it provides excellent defense.

The problem gets to be in the playoffs when you have guards and wings that can attack bigs from the perimeter, especially if they are paired with bigs that can shoot 3’s. Utah’s problems with Golden State and Houston over the last several years are a good example of this. Gobert is an excellent defender but if he has to guard Steph or Harden on the perimeter he becomes a meme.

Toronto has two bigs that can space the floor for pick and pops and several players that can hit threes off the dribble. You don’t want Embiid guarding Lowry above the break.

Not every team has players that can exploit this weakness but there are always at least one or two teams that can do this in each playoff race.

Where Embiid has an advantage that Gobert doesn’t have is that he can better exploit mismatches in the post which can discourage opposing teams from player smaller floor spacers from 3.

Even as a rookie, Zion is destroying teams on switches and he provides the additional benefit of being more comfortable away from the paint on defense.
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Re: Is healthy Zion a better talent than healthy Embiid? 

Post#103 » by fianchetto » Mon Feb 17, 2020 8:53 pm

jamaalstar21 wrote:
fianchetto wrote:
jamaalstar21 wrote:Embiid has not improved at all in his 4 years in the league. He's a nimble, athletic giant with a decent defensive motor, which makes him automatically one one of the best defensive players in the NBA. On offense, despite the size/athleticism, mobility and feathery touch... he still has no idea how to attack a defense. He's a post player that shoots 46% from the floor (same number as his rookie season). He hasn't improved as a passer. He's a little more effective in the mid-post this year. He looks pretty clueless with the ball in his hands. When he's not athletically dominating people, or on fire, he looks like a giant baby deer... 4 years in! Show me something big man!

Zion has been a defensive disappointment throughout 9 games. He certainly isn't flying Draymond right now. On offense... I feel you could throw him into any game with any player and he'd still be able to just be a cannonball with the most ridiculous second jump ever. He's going to help a team just by being on the floor. His rim diving "gravity" looks terrifying, just sucks the entire defense in when he starts to cut.

I dunno. Zion has only played 9 games so I still believe he can improve. Embiid is starting to make me worry that he won't improve. Embiid's basement when healthy is still perennial DPOY candidate wich is pretty good. I'll go with the unknown and pick Zion though.



Was hoping you’d go with Embiid at the end, but agreed on pretty much all points. I like defense so I’m not impartial.


If the question was "who's better/more impactful right now", I would say Embiid without hesitation. Also, if Zion doesn't project as a high impact defensive player, I'd swing back Embiid regardless of Zion's offensive potential.

Since we haven't seen the limit for Zion yet, it's easier to be tantalized by his potential. We're free to imagine the best possible Zion, and the data doesn't exist yet to dampen that enthusiasm. Since we have almost 200 games of Embiid (+ two playoff runs), it becomes much easier for us to project his career and imagine realistic best and worst case.

Once Embiid got healthy, he immediately burst into the NBA as a force of nature on both ends. A DPOY candidate and a 20 point scorer through sheer talent. I find it highly concerning that, despite that ridiculous talent, we haven't seen him find new things to do with it. His passing, shooting, offensive arsenal etc. has been almost completely stagnant, and he hasn't yet been good enough to dominate in the playoffs against tough matchups. The first 2 years I felt: "damn he's going to be unstoppable once he learns how to read defenses". The last 2 years I've felt more like "is he ever going to learn defenses?". I listened to Steve Nash talk about Amar'e (another late-comer to the game with super charged physical gifts) on a Bill Simmons pod. He talked about how Amar'e only learned to read backline defenses in his final season with the Suns/first season with New York (unfortunately right before the injuries overtook him). Maybe that could be the case for Jojo...he'll be a bit ineffective as a #1 option against elite defenses until he's 28 or 29? Joel is 25 right now. He does kind of remind me of a giant Amare on offense. Unstoppably talented but easily flummoxed.

It's never fair to compare a successful rookie to a veteran. We're still perimitted to picture the perfect Zion career and be excited about that. These comparisons are always automatically biased towards the young phenom over the veteran whose figuring out how to build on weaknesses the league has learned to exploit. And Zion so far sucks on defense...


Again, all reasonable points and I agree. I want to see what Embiid does in the playoffs before I lose the enthusiasm. He’s still young and hasn’t had as much experience as others at his age.
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Re: Is healthy Zion a better talent than healthy Embiid? 

Post#104 » by Edrees » Mon Feb 17, 2020 9:17 pm

I mean, if we're also assuming Embiid never had any injuries, I'm going with Embiid easily. Keep in mind a healthy Embiid would have 1.5 more years of NBA experience currently, so a lot more growth and development, and he could also play with more reckless abadon like he did in college, he'd be a enourmously better than he is currently.
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Re: Is healthy Zion a better talent than healthy Embiid? 

Post#105 » by PhilBlackson » Mon Feb 17, 2020 9:20 pm

If we're assuming health then this has to be Embiid imo.
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Re: Is healthy Zion a better talent than healthy Embiid? 

Post#106 » by MambaJuice » Mon Feb 17, 2020 9:34 pm

Zion is a freak but lets not get carried away. Zion relies heavily on athleticism and not skill. He needs to add a lot to his game to surpass Embiid.
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Re: Is healthy Zion a better talent than healthy Embiid? 

Post#107 » by jamaalstar21 » Mon Feb 17, 2020 10:09 pm

NO-KG-AI wrote:
jamaalstar21 wrote:And Zion so far sucks on defense...


Based on what?


Mostly that's my opinion on what I see on the court. He looks not up to speed with the Pelicans rotations and doesn't look great guarding the perimeter. His lack of height also seems more noticeable on the defensive end.

But if you don't like my opinion, I guess just use... literally ANY defensive metric? I just looked up the 5 defensive numbers I have the easiest access to:

DBPM: -1.8 (165th in the NBA)
Defensive rating: 113 (340th in the NBA)
Def EPM: -1.1 (16th percentile)
Def PIPM: -0.23
DRPM: 0.34 (187th in the NBA)

Don't get me wrong, I still think he projects as an impact defender in the NBA down the line, but any of us who were expecting Flying Draymond from day 1... we were a little optimistic.
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Re: Is healthy Zion a better talent than healthy Embiid? 

Post#108 » by bwgood77 » Mon Feb 17, 2020 10:18 pm

Embiid's better now. Who has the higher upside? I don't know....never sure how hard people are going to work, but due to Embiid's sheer size and higher ability to alter shots at the rim, etc, I'd have to go with him. I truly expected him to even start out blocking more shots than .4 per game. They both get fouled a lot inside to prevent easy dunks, but Embiid is quite a bit better FT shooter. Zion is a good passer, but so is Embiid, and averaged about the same # of assists per game his first year playing (more per 36).
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Re: Is healthy Zion a better talent than healthy Embiid? 

Post#109 » by bwgood77 » Mon Feb 17, 2020 10:19 pm

PhilBlackson wrote:If we're assuming health then this has to be Embiid imo.


Never thought I'd see that as an argument on Embiid's behalf.
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Re: Is healthy Zion a better talent than healthy Embiid? 

Post#110 » by PhilBlackson » Mon Feb 17, 2020 10:42 pm

bwgood77 wrote:
PhilBlackson wrote:If we're assuming health then this has to be Embiid imo.


Never thought I'd see that as an argument on Embiid's behalf.


An argument for would imply that I said health "was" a reason which didn't happen.

However don't be surprised when Zion can't put health as a strength on his resume moving forward either...
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Re: Is healthy Zion a better talent than healthy Embiid? 

Post#111 » by Sixerscan » Mon Feb 17, 2020 11:18 pm

lordjeff05 wrote:
syntax wrote:
lordjeff05 wrote:Embiid is a beast on defense but he suffers from the same issue that Rudy Gobert has. Neither player is comfortable guarding out on the perimeter. That leaves them susceptible to stretch bigs and guards who can create their own perimeter shot off the dribble. If you force them to switch, they are in trouble.


Hangon, you're saying that because Gobert blocks 2 shots a game and have the Jazz 8th in defensive rating (Sixers are 4th in defensive rating) that these big men are somehow a liability to their team on defense?


Yes, in the playoffs they can be. During the regular season ICE coverage with a decent rim protector is going to provide decent defense. When you combine long wings with excellent rim protectors, like the Jazz and Sixers have, it provides excellent defense.

The problem gets to be in the playoffs when you have guards and wings that can attack bigs from the perimeter, especially if they are paired with bigs that can shoot 3’s. Utah’s problems with Golden State and Houston over the last several years are a good example of this. Gobert is an excellent defender but if he has to guard Steph or Harden on the perimeter he becomes a meme.

Toronto has two bigs that can space the floor for pick and pops and several players that can hit threes off the dribble. You don’t want Embiid guarding Lowry above the break.

Not every team has players that can exploit this weakness but there are always at least one or two teams that can do this in each playoff race.

Where Embiid has an advantage that Gobert doesn’t have is that he can better exploit mismatches in the post which can discourage opposing teams from player smaller floor spacers from 3.

Even as a rookie, Zion is destroying teams on switches and he provides the additional benefit of being more comfortable away from the paint on defense.


Embiid went against the Raptors in the playoffs last year. He had some bad offensive games but he was pretty dominant defensively. Certainly wasn't a situation like Gobert where he was getting played off the court.

Flawed metric but the Sixers had a 95 defensive rating with Embiid on the court versus the Raptors (easily the best on the Sixers) whereas the Jazz were 114 with Gobert (easily the worst on the Jazz).

Maybe someone will take advantage of Embiid in the playoffs one day but it hasn't happened yet. Even in the Celtics and Raptors series that they lost the Sixers still had a positive net rating with Embiid on the court (Raptors to a hilarious degree).
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Re: Is healthy Zion a better talent than healthy Embiid? 

Post#112 » by NO-KG-AI » Mon Feb 17, 2020 11:23 pm

jamaalstar21 wrote:
NO-KG-AI wrote:
jamaalstar21 wrote:And Zion so far sucks on defense...


Based on what?


Mostly that's my opinion on what I see on the court. He looks not up to speed with the Pelicans rotations and doesn't look great guarding the perimeter. His lack of height also seems more noticeable on the defensive end.

But if you don't like my opinion, I guess just use... literally ANY defensive metric? I just looked up the 5 defensive numbers I have the easiest access to:

DBPM: -1.8 (165th in the NBA)
Defensive rating: 113 (340th in the NBA)
Def EPM: -1.1 (16th percentile)
Def PIPM: -0.23
DRPM: 0.34 (187th in the NBA)

Don't get me wrong, I still think he projects as an impact defender in the NBA down the line, but any of us who were expecting Flying Draymond from day 1... we were a little optimistic.


And despite all that, the Pelicans are massively better defensively with him on the floor. He looks like the game is going too fast for him on defense right now, but he's still not been sucking, we're way better with him out there.
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Re: Is healthy Zion a better talent than healthy Embiid? 

Post#113 » by FlatearthZorro » Mon Feb 17, 2020 11:29 pm

Zion is too small and he's legit gonna need to lose weight, he's a freak athlete and extremely strong, but he's gonna need to lose weight. I still wouldn't give an opinion as to who's better as Zion has played a few games and Embiid has been really dominant, but he seems unhappy.
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Re: Is healthy Zion a better talent than healthy Embiid? 

Post#114 » by jamaalstar21 » Tue Feb 18, 2020 10:41 pm

NO-KG-AI wrote:
jamaalstar21 wrote:
NO-KG-AI wrote:
Based on what?


Mostly that's my opinion on what I see on the court. He looks not up to speed with the Pelicans rotations and doesn't look great guarding the perimeter. His lack of height also seems more noticeable on the defensive end.

But if you don't like my opinion, I guess just use... literally ANY defensive metric? I just looked up the 5 defensive numbers I have the easiest access to:

DBPM: -1.8 (165th in the NBA)
Defensive rating: 113 (340th in the NBA)
Def EPM: -1.1 (16th percentile)
Def PIPM: -0.23
DRPM: 0.34 (187th in the NBA)

Don't get me wrong, I still think he projects as an impact defender in the NBA down the line, but any of us who were expecting Flying Draymond from day 1... we were a little optimistic.


And despite all that, the Pelicans are massively better defensively with him on the floor. He looks like the game is going too fast for him on defense right now, but he's still not been sucking, we're way better with him out there.



I mean all that's really saying is that you're better with Zion on than you are with Melli. Also, while Ingram has had an awesome season, I think he's worse on defense as a 4 than when he gets to be a giant shot contester on the perimeter.

I am optimistic about Zion on defense, but those of us (me included) who pictured him as an impact defender from day 1, either overrated his defense, or we didn't and he's just slow coming back from injury.

What's the number that paints them as massively better with him on the floor. I don't know how to look that up. Honest question, not a challenge.
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Re: Is healthy Zion a better talent than healthy Embiid? 

Post#115 » by NO-KG-AI » Tue Feb 18, 2020 11:57 pm

82games has the Pelicans as 9.2 points better with Zion on the floor (105.8 points per 100 possessions on, 115 off)

As a point of reference. I didn't look at every Pels player, but Hart is -3.4, and that's the best among our other rotation players. Ball is -2.6, Ingram is +3.9, Jrue is -0.8, Favors is -2.6, Reddick is +3.5, Hayes is -0.6. He's far and away ahead of the rest of the team.

You can probably relate it to a lot of things. He's still fast enough that he helps stop a lot of fast break points as a deterrent, and his scoring and rebounding has made it harder for other teams to get second chances, or transition opportunities, so I'm sure a lot of them playing better on defense with him on the floor is just the game shifting in our favor in general, but defense isn't just static.
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