All signs point toward Matisse Thybulle’s return in Thursday evening’s Sixers game against the Boston Celtics. After being listed as “probable” on Wednesday evening’s injury report, the rookie has been upgraded to “available” on Thursday afternoon’s injury report. Thybulle has missed the Sixers’ last seven games (3-4) due to a knee sprain.
Thybulle had been playing well off the bench (17.6 mpg) prior to his absence, wreaking havoc defensively and finding success shooting from deep (46.3% on 2.2 3PA) on the other end. If Thybulle picks up where he left off, he’ll provide significant aid to areas of need. In the 5 games following the Sixers’ Christmas Day victory over the league-leading Milwaukee Bucks, Philly has shot just 31.9% from behind the arc as a team. In the same span, their defensive rating is a below-average 111.5 — not exactly reflective of the capabilities of the team.
Given that it’s been 19 days since Thybulle has played competitive basketball (Dec. 21st vs. WAS), it wouldn’t come as a shock if Brett Brown eased Thybulle back into the rotation, playing the rookie, say, 10 minutes instead of double that. On the other hand, the Sixers are shorthanded with Joel Embiid out due to a dislocated finger. The Celtics are a strong opponent and Brown may not have the luxury of going deep into the bench.
- Joel Embiid is out after suffering a dislocated finger against the Oklahoma City Thunder.
- Marial Shayok (two-way) and Zhaire Smith (on assignment) are with the Delaware Blue Coats.
- Vincent Poirier is out (fractured finger).
- Robert Williams is out (left hip, bone endema).
- Romeo Langford is out (illness).
- Tremont Waters (two-way) is with the Maine Red Claws.