Joel Embiid Says There’s a ‘Pretty Good Chance’ He Plays in Game 2 or 3 vs. Heat


Philadelphia 76ers' Joel Embiid, of Cameroon, in action prior to the first half in Game 1 of a first-round NBA basketball playoff series against the Miami Heat, Saturday, April 14, 2018, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Chris Szagola)

The Philadelphia 76ers may have opened their postseason without Joel Embiid, but they may not be without their All-Star center for much longer.

Embiid told ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne that there’s a “pretty good chance” he plays in Game 2 or Game 3: “If it was my decision I would play, but I can’t get back out on the court if I don’t have the OK from them, but everything has been going well.”

He has not played since suffering an orbital fracture and concussion in a collision with teammate Markelle Fultz against the New York Knicks on March 28.

With the help of Embiid, Philadelphia snapped a five-year playoff drought by going 52-30 during the regular season. That record was good enough for the third seed in the Eastern Conference.

In 2017-18, the former No. 3 overall pick posted career highs in points (22.9), rebounds (11.0), assists (3.2) and field-goal percentage (48.3 percent). Those impressive numbers helped him earn his first career All-Star nod one year after being named to the NBA All-Rookie first team.

While he missed Game 1, he did do his part to get the Sixers fans fired up before tipoff at Wells Fargo Center:

RING US IN, @JoelEmbiid!

#PhilaUnite x #HereTheyCome

The big fella @JoelEmbiid ringing us in! 🛎🔨

As the photos show, Embiid has been fitted for a mask that could help him return to the court sooner rather than later.

There’s no denying that the 7’0″, 250-pound big man out of Kansas makes the Sixers a better team. However, the team won its final eight games of the regular season without Embiid, entering the playoffs on a 16-game winning streak.

Philadelphia ran out of a starting lineup of Ben Simmons, JJ Redick, Dario Saric, Robert Covington and Amir Johnson in Game 1 against the Miami Heat on Saturday. It may not be long before head coach Brett Brown can reinsert Embiid back into the lineup, perhaps as early as Monday or Thursday.


Leave A Reply