There was a time when Seger Park had some of the best basketball courts in Philadelphia. They were easily accessible—they’re in Center City and just a short walk from both of Philadelphia’s subway lines—and they attracted good players from around the city. (You could see Prep Charter’s Rodney Green versus Episcopal Academy’s Wayne Ellington, as I did in 2007.) Because of neighbors complaining about after-hours pickup games, the basketball rims now come down when the park closes for the night—although one of the rims is almost never up now. Sixers center Joel Embiid is taking advantage of Seger Park during the day, however, to punk some poor Philly saps.
Last week Embiid dunked on some “trash-talking fools” at the courts at 10th and Lombard. (You can see the rimless backboard in the background.) On Monday, he dunked several times on people at the same courts.
I’ve lived around the corner from the courts at 10th and Lombard for almost 13 years now, and I missed Embiid by 10 minutes. But thanks to the internet, videos are getting out almost instantaneously—and people are usually tagging the Processors at the Rights to Ricky Sanchez podcast in them to make sure the masses see them—which functions as a helpful sort of news alert the next time he shows up.
Embiid also goes to the playgrounds to play tennis, perhaps with a trainer. He played tennis both times he dunked on people at Seger Park.
Yes, Joel Embiid is continuing to nail the Philadelphia lifestyle. All that’s missing is him playing a game of knockout, really. And one of these times I’m going to show up at Seger Park to shoot some hoops and get dunked on—happily.