Sixers’ center Joel Embiid available to play against Indiana Pacers
Kyle O’Quinn listed as questionable, while Josh Richardson remains doubtful for Saturday’s matchup vs. Indiana Pacers.
It looks like 76ers center Joel Embiid will be available to play against the Indiana Pacers Saturday night at the Wells Fargo Center.
The two-time All-Star wasn’t listed on the NBA’s 1:30 p.m. injury report for that night’s league games. The fact that he isn’t listed means the Sixers think Embiid is going to play.
There was a thought that Embiid might get the night off to rest his left knee.
However, the Sixers could be without two rotation players.
Reserve center Kyle O’Quinn is questionable with a left-calf strain. He missed the previous three games. Meanwhile, shooting guard Josh Richardson is doubtful with right hamstring tightness. He missed Friday’s 101-95 victory over the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden with the injury.
The Sixers will be without Jonah Bolden, Shake Milton and Marial Shayok. The three players are on assignment to the team’s NBA G-League affiliate, the Delaware Blue Coats.
Embiid has missed four games this season.
He was sidelined Oct. 26 against the Detroit Pistons with a sprained right ankle. Then, he served a two-game suspension (Portland Trail Blazers on Nov. 2 and Phoenix Suns on Nov. 4) for fighting Minnesota Timberwolves center Karl-Anthony Towns.
Then he missed their Nov. 13 game at the Orlando Magic. It was the Sixers’ second game on back-to-back nights. That absence was part of his overall care plan, to keep him healthy for the entire season and the postseason, according to the team.
The 25-year-old was hampered by tendinitis in his left knee late last season. He missed 14 of the final 24 regular-season games, plus Game 3 of the opening-round playoff series against the Brooklyn Nets.
On Friday, he had a big hand in the Sixers’ 101-95 victory over the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden. Embiid had game highs of 27 points and 17 rebounds to go with three blocks.
Embiid left the Sixers locker room without talking to the media following the game. While the team wanted to keep his status in house, it was thought that he probably wouldn’t play Saturday. He logged 35 minutes, 27 seconds in what was the Sixers’ sixth game in nine days.
Plus, they host the Utah Jazz on Monday. So one might argue a day of rest on Saturday would benefit Embiid, who has health and conditioning issues.