Philadelphia 76ers All-Star Joel Embiid was ruled out shortly before Saturday’s 132-94 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks due to a shoulder injury.
Sixers coach Doc Rivers said Embiid had to test his shoulder before the game. The All-Star warmed up on the floor and was initially reported as available and in the starting lineup before later being ruled out. Embiid has now missed 19 games this season.
Rivers said after the game he thinks Embiid might’ve been able to play had this been a playoff game.
“I’m assuming yes,” Rivers said. “But I honestly can’t give you that answer… the trainers came in… I think in most cases, if it’s a playoff game, most guys can play. I don’t think Ben [Simmons] could have played today if it was a playoff game.”
Rivers also said he is not concerned about Embiid’s ability to play in consecutive games come playoff time.
“He’ll have more rest in the playoffs,” Rivers said. “You don’t play any back-to-backs in the playoffs typically. You get a day off in between every game. So I am not that concerned. I think Joel, I think he has built up through this year. He is in better shape this year physically. Do we miss too many games [to injuries] as a team? Well yeah, this year we have missed way too many games.”
The 76ers were also without Simmons, who missed his fourth straight game due to illness. Shooting guard Furkan Korkmaz sat out his second straight game with a right ankle sprain.
Saturday’s loss put the Sixers a game behind the first-place Brooklyn Nets and 1.5 games ahead of third-place Milwaukee in the Eastern Conference standings.