Philadelphia 76ers star Joel Embiid raised concerns over the NBA season restarting at the end of the month, but said he can carry the championship hopefuls as the league prepares to return following the coronavirus-enforced break.
The 2019-20 NBA season is set to restart via a 22-team format at the Disney World complex in Orlando, Florida on July 30 after the campaign was halted due to COVID-19 in March.
Embiid said "was not a big fan of the idea" and doesn't believe it will be safe enough.
“But I’m not gonna let the city down or my teammates, my family," he said in a conference call with reporters on Tuesday.
Wear your mask. 😷✌ pic.twitter.com/8H3bNoS6zM— Philadelphia 76ers (@sixers) July 8, 2020
"I don’t like the idea and I still don’t believe in it. I am going to do the right things.
"But I don’t trust those other guys to do the same. But I’ve got to do my job."
All eyes will be on the three-time All-Star center when the season resumes following the coronavirus pandemic.
Philadelphia will recommence against Eastern Conference rivals the Indiana Pacers, who share identical 39-26 records to be fifth and sixth respectively, on August 1.
Embiid, who had been averaging 23.4 points, 11.8 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game this season, insisted the 76ers' offense should go through him.
"I know what I'm capable of, and I know what my team-mates think of me.
"I know I'm capable of carrying the team, so it's all about me being assertive. If I feel like I'm not getting the ball, I just got to talk to them and do what I have to do.
"But at the end of the day, I should never be in a position to complain about getting the ball, just because of who I am.
"I believe I can carry the team, and I believe being able to do that, I just got to take matters into my own hands. And obviously, I need to be in positions where I feel comfortable, and I believe my team-mates are going to help."