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#pounditMonday, March 20, 2023

Doc Rivers adds clarity on severity of Joel Embiid’s thumb injury

Joel Embiid holds a ball

Nov 27, 2019; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (21) warms up before action against the Sacramento Kings at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid is playing through a thumb injury that is clearly going to be a factor throughout the playoffs.

On Friday, reports emerged suggesting Embiid is playing with what is believed to be a torn thumb ligament. 76ers coach Doc Rivers shed some more light on Embiid’s status Saturday. While Rivers did not confirm a diagnosis, he admitted there is “concern” about Embiid’s thumb, but that playing through it was not going to make the injury worse.

Rivers declined to go into too much detail about what Embiid is dealing with, but made clear that whatever is going on with Embiid’s thumb is “not a good injury.”

There appears to be little doubt that Embiid will be able to continue playing through the injury. The question may be how much it impacts his effectiveness. He had 33 points and 13 rebounds, including a dagger of a game-winner, in a Game 3 overtime victory over Toronto. On the evidence, he can still dominate, no matter how much pain he is in.


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