Injury Updates: Joel Embiid discusses health, plus more on Harden, House, and McDaniels
Joel Embiid dominated the Golden State Warriors last night, scoring 46 points to go along with nine rebounds, eight assists, two steals and a block.
Embiid entered the night questionable with “right calf tightness” while James Harden was out yet again with a sore left achilles. Jalen McDaniels (right hip) and Danuel House Jr (shoulder) also missed last night’s game.
The Sixers will be in Phoenix tonight on the second leg of a back-to-back before heading to Denver on Monday night to face Nikola Jokic and the Nuggets. Obviously, health over the final week of the regular season is of the upmost importance.
Embiid spoke with the media following last night’s game and discussed his current injury status.
Joel Embiid on Injury Concerns via SixersWire
“It’s okay, a little sore but whatever got to keep managing it to see how it feels tomorrow and you know the next few days,” Embiid told reporters. “It’s all about making sure I’m healthy for playoffs so whatever gets me there healthy, that’s what we are going to do.”
“It’s tough when you got to do a lot offensively, and then defensively you also got to do a lot, whether it’s protecting the rim, edging and helping all over the place, especially against a team at that end that moves the ball, that makes your defense get in rotations all the time it’s tough but that’s my job and I love it,” Embiid added. “Tonight could have been better, but we kinda went away from what was working at the start.”
With so many players out, the Sixers really didn’t have much of a choice and you know that Embiid if somewhat healthy, is going to play, even more so over the final stretch of the regular season with the NBA MVP Award within reach.
Still, it’s important that the Sixers finally enter this year’s playoffs as healthy as possible. While making the playoffs six consecutive seasons, it’s hard to really grasp how badly injuries have hindered Philly in the playoffs.
The Sixers have to get healthy. Period.
Read More: Joel Embiid and Draymond Green’s conversation following last night’s game
Last night, the Sixers took an 88-79 lead into the fourth quarter and for whatever reason, Doc Rivers, I guess, found that to be a comfortable margin. The Sixers’ head coach started the final frame with the following lineup, which as you can see, was questionable at best.
Sixers Lineup to begin the 4th Quarter
- Shake Milton
- Tyrese Maxey
- Georges Niang
- Furkan Korkmaz
- Paul Reed
Embiid played the entire third quarter, so obviously, he needed a break at some point, but the fact that Rivers opted to play him the entire third and not stagger his minutes to avoid a situation where you start the final frame on the road with that rotation while holding a double-digit lead is a criminal offense.
The result, as you could imagine, was Embiid checking back into the game with 8:26 left on the clock as Jordan Poole scored on a driving dunk to put Golden State back to 93-91.
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Even with Embiid checking back in with 8:26 left on the clock and scoring 13 straight points, the effort wasn’t enough as Jordan Poole scored on a driving dunk to put Golden State back 93-91. Poole scored 33 points including a clutch 3-pointer with just 1:18 left on the clock as Steph Curry scored 29 points and Klay Thompson scored 21 points to go along with six rebounds in the win.
The Sixers are back in action tonight in Phoenix, with Jokic and the Nuggets waiting for them Monday night in Denver.