Joel Embiid on Evan Mobley: ‘I think he can become one of these great big men in the league that have so much skill’

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David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid had some major praise for Cleveland Cavaliers big man Evan Mobley following the Cavs’ win over Philly on Wednesday night.

Embiid believes that Mobley can get to the same level as Nikola Jokic, Karl-Anthony Towns and some of the other skilled big men in the NBA.

“He’s got a chance,” Embiid said of Mobley. “I like him a lot. I think he has a lot of potential. I think he can become one of these great big men in the league that have so much skill. You talk about, who are the best? Jokic. Karl Towns. I think he can be that good. He just needs to have more opportunities. That’s what I see in them. It’s all about opportunity. If he gets a chance to keep making mistakes and learning from it and keep getting better, I think he can get to that level. But he’s already really good.”

It’s really cool to see Embiid praising and motivating the second-year Cavs big man, especially since the five-time All-Star is one of the best big men in the game today.

Mobley, the No. 3 overall pick in the 2021 NBA Draft, had a terrific rookie season for the Cavs, and the team is hoping he can develop into a star alongside Donovan Mitchell, Darius Garland and Jarrett Allen.

Cleveland dominated the Sixers on Wednesday night, winning 113-85. Mobley had a big hand in the win, recording 16 points, eight rebounds and three assists for the Cavs. He was also huge on the defensive end, helping limit Embiid to just 19 points in the game.

The University of Southern California product also showcased a sweet move on a coast-to-coast drive to the basket.

It’s moves like that from Mobley that show just how unique of a talent he is at his size.

While there is still a lot that Mobley needs to work on to be mentioned in the same breath as Towns, Jokic and Embiid, he seems to have the skills necessary to make that leap at such a young age.

The biggest improvement Mobley will have to make is with his jumper, as the Cavs big man is a career 24.1 percent shooter from beyond the arc. Towns, who is one of the best shooting big men in the NBA, has shot at least 40.0 percent from beyond the arc in four different seasons.

Improving as a shooter can become a natural progression for Mobley as he gets more comfortable with his offensive game, especially since he already possesses so many elite tools on the defensive end of the floor.

Embiid isn’t the only NBA star that has praised Mobley recently. Milwaukee Bucks superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo also believes that the Cavs big man is going to be a great player in the NBA someday.

The Cavs are certainly hoping that these players are right about Mobley, especially since he could be with the team for the long term alongside Mitchell and Garland.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.