After colliding with teammate Markelle Fultz last month that resulted in an orbital fracture and concussion, it added to the unfortunate injury bug that Joel Embiid has had to deal with throughout his career. Embiid was recently seen wearing a mask which brought speculation about if he would play in Philly’s Game 1 matchup in the first round of the playoffs vs the Heat. Embiid did not play but the Sixers had no problem as they coasted to a 130-103 win last night.
Embiid has now cleared concussion protocol but the team says that he will not play in Game 2, according to ESPN. Embiid originally old ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne that he wanted to play in Game 2. Despite the absence of Game 1, Embiid said that he has been feeling good since recovering from the injury.
“If it was my decision, I would play, but I can’t get back out on the court if I don’t have the OK from them,” said Embiid. “But everything has been going well. I’ve been able to do everything. And I feel great. So we got a pretty good chance for Game 2 or Game 3. We gonna see how it feels in the next couple of days.”
Despite not having their all-star, the Sixers have shown that they can hold their own without him as they closed the regular season with 16 straight wins and added to that momentum with their dominant Game 1 win. Many feel that the Heat can pose a threat to the Sixers but if Embiid remains healthy and returns for Game 3, this first round series may be a quick one.