Shams Charania of The Athletic reported on Friday that Embiid has an injury to his right thumb. At least for now, though, the 76ers will not miss his services, as he’s planning on playing through it.
There is fear that Philadelphia 76ers All-NBA star Joel Embiid has a torn ligament in his right thumb, but Embiid has vowed to continue playing through the injury, sources tell @TheAthletic @Stadium. Embiid will rely on his pain tolerance and 76ers‘ medical staff.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) April 22, 2022
We’d say that this was not welcome news for the 76ers and their fans — but that would be a dramatic understatement.
Just can’t have nice things. Unbelievable https://t.co/3Ug1TBBxl0
— Eric K (@E_Krawl) April 22, 2022
— Jah Harden (@Joe_feels) April 22, 2022
Man, what? How? Injuries becoming an even more significant postseason factor than usual. https://t.co/8TfU0MSbtM
— SmokelyCarmichael (@DeuceSkywalker) April 22, 2022
Wow. Hope he is okay to play against Miami next series. https://t.co/9XkpNbNJsc
— Ian (@isb0121) April 22, 2022
Everybody else with the injuries I get. It happens. Joel is injured every post season. More of the same for him. https://t.co/vAYvyVTgfB
— Trey Crosby III Guru (@TCIIIESQ) April 22, 2022
— Brandon (@iLikeDanzDaily) April 22, 2022
In the short term, this certainly bolsters Toronto’s chances in the ongoing Eastern Conference quarterfinals series between the two teams.
— KE (@Bigkemaj) April 22, 2022
— Scott Cullen (@ByScottCullen) April 22, 2022
Realistically, though, Philadelphia should be fine against Toronto. The 76ers presently lead the series 3-0 and are going for a sweep on Saturday afternoon. Even if the Raptors win that game, Game 5 would be in Philadelphia — where the 76ers won the series’ first two games by decisive 20 and 15-point margins, respectively. Embiid being limited will hurt Philadelphia but chances are, the 76ers will get through this series.
Beyond that, though, it’s more of a mystery. Even if Embiid plays, will he be at his best? If they’re going to continue to advance through the Eastern Conference playoffs against increasingly tough competition (including a likely matchup against the No. 1 seeded Miami Heat in the next round), the 76ers will need Embiid at top form.