As if things couldn’t get any worse for the Philadelphia 76ers. They’ll now be without their superstar center Joel Embiid due to a left foot sprain.
The injury seems to have occurred in Saturday’s game against the Timberwolves in South Philadelphia due to friendly fire. Embiid was running the floor to crash the glass for an offensive rebound as George Niang attempted a shot. But Niang collided with Towns and accidentally fell back into the oncoming Embiid, rolling up on his left foot/ankle. Embiid then stayed laying on the floor for a while until getting back to his feet and eventually finished the game. Minnesota escaped with a one-point victory.
An unusual string of injuries has hit the Sixers over the past week. Tobias Harris missed both games over the weekend because of left hip soreness. He’s day-to-day. Tyrese Maxey went down last Friday with what was later ruled a left foot fracture that will be reevaluated in three-to-four weeks. These two setbacks come on the heels of star point guard James Harden being ruled out for a month with a foot injury of his own that was suffered on November 2nd in a loss to the Washington Wizards. That’s now four-fifths of your starting lineup on the shelf.
What is next?
With 16 games in the books and an 8-8 start, this is not how it was expected to go for the 76ers as a team with championship aspirations for the ‘22-23 campaign. Head coach Doc Rivers and his staff will now have to find a way to stay afloat during the time all of the key players are unable to play. A lot will now be asked of De’Anthony Melton, Shake Milton, P.J. Tucker, and others to not lose much ground in the tough Eastern Conference, but it will not be easy.
Philadelphia will host Brooklyn on Tuesday night before traveling to Charlotte for the second night of a back-to-back on Wednesday. Then later in the week, two road games in Orlando on Friday and Sunday for a weekend series. Maybe we’ll see if Embiid and Harris can return to help out then.