Philadelphia 76ers veteran forward Tobias Harris isn't the only player on his team having an improved season. While Joel Embiid has established himself as one of the league's best centers already, he still looks much improved this year in more areas than one.
It's still early on in the season, but some would go as far as saying that Embiid is the league's MVP so far. Just a couple of weeks ago, Harris talked about the big man's recent level of play following a Sixers win over the Boston Celtics.
"I think for sure he's putting on an MVP year," Harris said. "One of the biggest things is that he continues to sustain it game after game. And we continue to progress, and even himself continues to progress throughout this year. I'm happy for him because this is what he's put in. When you win and are successful as a team, you get that type of notoriety for sure."
On Friday night following a Sixers win over the Minnesota Timberwolves, Harris once again raved about Embiid's game as the big man took over for the 76ers for three-straight quarters before getting the rest of the night off.
"It's just dominance on his part," Harris said about Embiid. "He's figured it out and has done such a good job of creating plays for other guys out of the post, so teams now, tonight they had to guard him straight up. He's continuing to figure that out, continuing to be dominant out there. It's a pleasure to be able to be on the floor with him when he has that demeanor. It makes us a really great team."
The 76ers got off to a slow start against the Timberwolves on Friday. As Philly shot just 22-percent from the field through the first quarter, Embiid's ability to get to the free-throw line and knock down all six of his attempts kept them even with the Timberwolves. Through the first half, Embiid led all players in scoring with 21 points.
Philly had a small lead coming out of the half, but Embiid took over and made the game his. While Harris and others held it down as Embiid's supporting cast, the All-Star shined bright. In just 26 minutes of action, Embiid accounted for 37 points. After spending ten minutes on the floor in the third quarter, Embiid got the rest of the night off as the break was well-deserved.
When Embiid's night ended early, Tobias Harris held it down for the rest of the group. With all other starters remaining on the bench, Harris stayed on the floor with the bench unit for roughly eight minutes in the fourth quarter to help secure the victory.
Harris' Friday night performance was noteworthy, but the veteran forward offers all of the credit to his superstar teammate first as he knows the importance of Embiid's presence and skillset.
Justin Grasso covers the Philadelphia 76ers for Sports Illustrated. You can follow him on Twitter: @JGrasso_