Joel Embiid, who has played as well as anyone this season, suffered a serious-looking injury knee injury during the Philadelphia 76ers-Washington Wizards game Friday night. After throwing down a dunk, the 7-footer landed awkwardly on his left leg, which clearly hyperextended. He left the game and Sixers fans and front office alike spent several hours anxiously waiting on MRI results.
This morning, though, brought good news as there is no structural damage, ACL or meniscus damage. ESPN's Ramona Shelburne and Adrian Wojnarowski were first to report.
Embiid will miss some time with a bone bruise, though how much is unclear. It needn't be to understand that a two- or three-week absence is preferable to a 12- or 18-month rehabilitation, which are numbers and fears that came to mind while watching the replay.
The Sixers can afford up to a month without their center as the weak Eastern Conference assures they'll finish no worse than the No. 3 seed unless the wheels totally come off down the stretch. Getting Embiid some much-needed rest could be a blessing in disguise if he is, in fact, able to come back at 100 percent.
Embiid is on pace to become the first player in three decades to score at least 30 points per game while grabbing at least 11 rebounds in over three decades. The prospect of seeing him healthy and productive in the playoffs remains very realistic and exciting.