Sixers' Joel Embiid elated to be at Kansas, the place it all started

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Joel Embiid (21) works around Iowa State forward Georges Niang, back, during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Lawrence, Kan.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Joel Embiid is back at the place that gave him fame.

After Wednesday’s game, the 76ers flew to Kansas City and boarded a bus to the University of Kansas in Lawrence. The team is scheduled to practice Thursday at KU’s Allen Fieldhouse.

Embiid is the reason that the Sixers are making this trip to the university. The same can be said about their entertaining the Miami Heat in Friday’s preseason finale at the Sprint Center in Kansas City. The 23-year-old played one season at Kansas in 2013-14 before the Sixers selected him third overall in the 2014 NBA draft.

“I feel like it all started [at Kansas],” Embiid said. “So going back there, I think it’s going to be amazing for me.”

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In addition to catching up with KU’s coaching staff, this trip will allow the 23-year-old to spend time with his sister, Muriel. She’s a student at Kansas. The Cameroonian mentioned that the Jayhawks coaches, their wives and his friends in Lawrence have supported his sister, who is thousands of miles from home.

Asked about practicing at Allen Fieldhouse, Embiid didn’t hide his love for the 16,300-seat arena named after late KU Hall of Fame coach Phog Allen.

“That’s the best arena in the whole world,” Embiid said. “Philly is a close second.”

In addition to the fieldhouse, the Jayhawks play several games at the Sprint Center. This game will also be a homecoming for Sixers reserve point guard Jacob Pullen, who played at Kansas State from 2007-11. The Wildcats also play a few games at Sprint.

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