The Philadelphia 76ers’ frustrating run with injuries continued with center Joel Embiid ruled out for the remainder of the season. However, their handling of this situation seems far from ideal.
The Philadelphia 76ers can’t catch a break.
Just a week after announcing that rookie Ben Simmons would not debut this season due to a lingering foot issue, the Sixers have announced that center Joel Embiid will miss the remainder of the season due to a persistent knee injury.
“The assessment of Monday’s follow-up MRI of Joel Embiid’s left knee appears to reveal that the area affected by the bone bruise has improved significantly, while the previously identified meniscus tear appears more pronounced in this most recent scan.”
Embiid’s initial diagnosis was revealed on Jan. 20 as a simple knee contusion during a game against the Portland Trail Blazers. However, it has since been revealed that an ensuing MRI revealed a meniscus tear along with the initial bone bruise diagnosis.
This tweet is hard to disagree with. After being pulled early from the Trail Blazers game for precautionary reasons, Embiid returned just seven days later to take on the Houston Rockets.
In what was his last game of his debut season, Embiid posted 32 points, seven rebounds, four assists, three steals and two blocks.
Just days after his final game of the season, Embiid was initially slated to miss just the next three games for what the Sixers stated was a left knee contusion. At the time, head coach Brett Brown stated:
“There’s no red flags here. It’s just us going overboard, making sure we’re doing the right thing with what all learning is a very important person in our program.”
Of course Brown’s optimism has proven to be incorrect.
Following this latest revelation, Sixers’ president of basketball operations Bryan Colangelo said:
“Our primary objective and focus remains to protect his long-term health and ability to perform on the basketball court. As our medical team and performance staff continue their diligence in the evaluation, treatment, and rehabilitation of Joel’s injury, we will provide any pertinent updates when available.”
Of course, Embiid is no stranger to the rehab scene. He missed the first two seasons of his pro career due to a recurring foot injury. As it stands now, Embiid has in 31 total games over three seasons.
In this short time, Embiid averaged 20.2 points, 7.8 rebounds and 2.5 blocks per game. He shot 46.6 percent from the field in just 25.4 minutes per game.
With Embiid’s injury history in mind, it seems unfathomable the Sixers would throw Embiid out on the court just one week after a knee issue flared without undergoing precautionary scans. Following on from statement above, Dr. Glashow also concluded:
“We will continue to work with leading specialists to gather additional information through clinical examination and sequential testing to determine the best course of action and next steps.”
The fact that the Sixers’ have not completely ruled out surgery is clearly far from an ideal outcome.