Adrian Wojnarowski: Boston center Ante Zizic also expec…

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November 23, 2017 | 7:05 pm EST Update
Joel Embiid is arguably one of the best players in the NBA. The 76ers center is one of five players to average at least 20 points and 10 rebounds. Yet, he’ll tell you that he’s more than a double-double machine. “Not to be cocky, but I think I’m the best defensive player in the league right now,” Embiid said following Wednesday night’s 101-81 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers. His comment came in response to being asked how good can he become, defensively. I’m still getting better,” Embiid added. “My blocks are a little down [compared to last season] I’m a better rebounder this year.”
A growing question inside the Trail Blazers’ early season has been the noticeable drop off in production from Maurice Harkless. The Blazers’ starting small forward is not scoring. He’s not rebounding. He’s not producing much of anything these days “I just feel like I’m just out there to be out there … I don’t know,’’ Harkless said Wednesday. “I’m just out there, and that’s frustrating,’’ Harkless said. “I’m just out there playing defense, which is cool … running back and forth. Out there running track.’’
Harkless, for his part, says he wants to contribute more, but is not sure how he can in this offense. “We gotta figure out ways … not only me, but ways to get other people going,’’ Harkless said. “Every game it’s the same thing … we play through three people.’’ Harkless was referring to guards Damian Lillard, CJ McCollum and center Jusuf Nurkic, who have combined to take 57 percent of the team’s shots this season. “Everybody else is just …. It’s hard to get into a rhythm,’’ Harkless said. “It’s that simple.’’
November 23, 2017 | 2:33 pm EST Update
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