INDIANAPOLIS — Joel Embiid and Wilson Chandler are both listed as questionable for Thursday night’s game against the Indiana Pacers.
Embiid, who has lower back tightness, did participate in the 76ers’ shootaround Thursday morning at Bankers Life Field. Chandler, who has an upper respiratory infection, was not there.
The Sixers (29-16) will be at a huge disadvantage against the Pacers (29-14) if they don’t play.
Embiid has established himself as arguably the NBA’s best center. The 7-foot-2, 270-pounder is seventh in the league in scoring (27.0 points per game), fourth in rebounds (13.3) and tied for sixth in blocked shots (1.95). The Sixers will need his presence against Pacers center Myles Turner. The athletic 7-footer is the league’s top shot-blocker (2.76) and can step out and score from the perimeter.
The Sixers are 1-2 in games Embiid has missed this season. They defeated the Detroit Pistons, 117-111, on Dec. 7 thanks to a 38-point outburst by Jimmy Butler. Then the Sixers suffered a 129-95 setback to the Portland Trail Blazers on Dec. 30. And on Friday, the Atlanta Hawks escaped with a 123-121 victory.
Meanwhile, Chandler has missed 15 games this season. The power forward is coming off one of his best performances of the season. He had 14 points on 5-for-7 shooting (including 3 of 4 three-pointers) in Tuesday’s 149-107 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Chandler is averaging 6.5 points and 4.5 rebounds and shooting 38.9 percent on three-pointers as the role player in the starting lineup.
After Thursday, the Sixers will have a three-game home stand against the Oklahoma City Thunder (Saturday), Houston Rockets (Monday) and San Antonio Spurs (Wednesday).