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Sixers lose Embiid, zap Wizards

He was in the locker room. He is in pretty good spirits. Let’s hope for the best.



Rob Carr/Agence france-presse JOEL Embiid leaves the game after suffering a knee injury in Philadelphia 76ers’ 127-101 win over the Washington Wizards.

National Basketball Association (NBA) Most Valuable Player (MVP) candidate Joel Embiid emerged from quarantine only to exit in the third quarter with a left knee injury as the Philadelphia 76ers beat the Washington Wizards, 127-101, in Washington.

Embiid, who missed Sunday’s All-Star Game because of Covid-19 restrictions, threw down a dunk and landed awkwardly on his left knee before falling to the floor halfway through the third quarter.

Sixers trainer Kevin Johnson attended to him before getting up and walking to the dressing room on his own. The team said he had a hyperextended left knee and would not return.

Philadelphia coach Doc Rivers spoke to Embiid after the game and said the all-star was upbeat. Rivers said team doctors would examine Embiid further on Saturday once the swelling went down.

“He fell off balance. I am not going to speculate,” Rivers said of Embiid, who finished with a team high 23 points. “He was in the locker room. He is in pretty good spirits. Let’s hope for the best.”
The victory kept Philadelphia on top of the Eastern Conference to move it a full game ahead of second-place Brooklyn Nets.

Embiid shot eight-of-11 from the floor and had seven rebounds and three assists in 20 minutes of playing time.

The Sixers led the Wizards 80-60 when Embiid was hurt. He had surgery on the same knee in 2017 causing him to miss part of the season.

“It looked like a hyper-extension. That’s what we all hope it is,” teammate Tobias Harris said.

“We’re just praying that he’ll be okay and be healthy tomorrow.”
Embiid, who turns 27 on Tuesday, was playing in his first game after receiving a negative test for Covid-19 earlier Friday.

Teammate Ben Simmons, who also missed the All-Star Game last weekend, has not yet been cleared to play, needing another negative test to be green lighted after he and Embiid were exposed to a Philadelphia barber who tested positive for the coronavirus.

Embiid entered Friday averaging 30.2 points and 11.6 rebounds in 30 games this season. Simmons is averaging 16.1 points, 7.9 rebounds and 7.6 assists in 31 games.

Despite missing Embiid for almost half the game and Simmons for the whole game, the Sixers still managed to win their fourth straight.

Shooting guard Shake Milton came off the bench to score 18 points and Tobias Harris tallied 14 points and eight assists in the win.