Joel Embiid, the NBA’s reigning Most Valuable Player, became a French citizen in 2022 and could play for the host country at the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris. He also, however, has American citizenship, and could theoretically join Team USA. Last month, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst reported that both countries have quietly pitched him, but he hasn’t made a decision. In an interview with SiriusXM Radio, Grant Hill, the managing director of the USA’s men’s national team, confirmed that he’d spoken with Embiid about representing the United States.
“I’ll just answer it with a simple answer and that’s, ‘Yes, I’ve talked to him,'” Hill said. “No, I mean, look, he has options, he’s a great player. But he’s also somebody who we’ve talked to about next summer, and we’ll see. We’ll see how that plays out.”
Hill then congratulated Embiid on his recent marriage.
Embiid, a native of Cameroon, will not play in this summer’s FIBA World Cup. The 29-year-old said in January that playing in international competition would depend in part on how his body feels following a grueling NBA season, and he did not definitively say which country he wanted to represent. Last July, Boris Diaw, the general manager of France’s men’s national team, said that Embiid wanted to play for France that summer, but a hand injury got in the way.
USA Basketball recently recruited Paolo Banchero away from the Italian national team, and the 20-year-old forward will play for Team USA this summer. It is unclear, though, where exactly it stands in the Embiid recruiting battle.