Should we or should we not integrate Joel Embiid to the Blues? The debate has been agitating France from the basket since May and the public establishment of the Cameroonian’s desire to be naturalized. The thing is even more concrete since July 5, when his change of marital status was announced in the Official Journal. On Thursday, a weight player, literally and figuratively, appeared in the person of pivot Rudy Gobert, with whom the Sixers player could be associated in the racket. And he sees no objection to it.
“A player like Joel Embiid, there is only one in the world, explains the Frenchman, who moved from Utah to Minnesota this summer, to Journal du Dimanche. So yes, I would like to see one day with the jersey of the France team. It is above all up to the coach (Editor’s note: Vincent Collet) to make this decision. But no one can really say no to a talent like him. From the moment it sticks to our team, our chemistry and our principles of play, and that he is ready to adapt to it, it can be a very good weapon for us. »
“If Joël is selected, of course he will be well received”
Gobert is the first French player to take a definitive position on the file since Joel Embiid obtained his naturalization. The French basket federation and coach Vincent Collet have not spoken since this announcement. But within the tricolor group, the possible reinforcement of the interior massif of Philadelphia is debated.
“We discuss a little on the subject, yes. We talked about it with Boris (Editor’s note: Diaw, general manager of the Blues). I think he consulted each player, which is a good thing, continues Rudy Gobert. We’ll see if it becomes a little more realistic or not, but it’s interesting to have this kind of debate. And if Joel is selected, of course he will be well received. Although I can’t speak for all the players. »
Joel Embiid has not spoken publicly on the subject. The pivot underwent two hand operations during his vacation and his participation in the Euro in September does not seem possible. The player could, however, compete in the 2023 World Cup, a competition for which the French team is not yet qualified, and especially the 2024 Paris Olympics.