Joel Embiid will be out the next two games for the 76ers and could miss a third if his knee doesn’t improve.
The Philadelphia star has been dealing with tendinitis in his left knee and missed Saturday’s game against the Timberwolves. He already is scheduled to be sidelined during Monday’s game against the Mavericks and Wednesday’s game against the Hawks before. He will be reevaluated for Thursday’s game against the Bucks.
76ers coach Brett Brown explained that Embiid’s three-game absence with the potential of missing more matchups isn’t a big deal, and that the team is taking precautionary measures to rest him before gearing up for the playoffs.
“It isn’t ideal,” Brown said of his team’s health, via The Philadelphia Inquirer. “In a perfect world, you’d have all these guys together and playing, and playing a lot, you know, growing in relation to familiarity and so on.”
Embiid has missed 10 games with the knee issues since the All-Star Break and the Sixers have had their full starting rotation healthy only 10 of 25 games since the trade deadline. In addition to Embiid missing time, Jimmy Butler missed a game March 12 and Ben Simmons was out last Monday with a stomach virus.
Despite the setbacks, Brown said the third-ranked 76ers should be able to maintain their 4 1/2-game lead over the fourth-place Celtics in the Eastern Conference without Embiid, if need be.
“You can go this way or that way,” Brown said of resting Embiid in preparation for the playoffs. “The way that we have chosen to go is the wisest of our options. I’m sure of that.”
The team has six games left in the regular season until its postseason run begins.