After the shorthanded Sixers played about as competitively as you could ask for during a tough six-game road trip, it looks like reinforcements are finally on the way.
The Sixers have been dealing with a host of absences from key players due to health and safety protocols and various injuries. This includes Joel Embiid being out for the last nine games since testing positive for COVID-19, and Tobias Harris most recently dealing with left hip soreness and missing the last two games.
Now, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Sixers are planning to upgrade both players to questionable to play in Saturday’s home game against the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Sixers plan to list Joel Embiid and Tobias Harris (hip) as questionable for Saturday’s game against Minnesota, source tells ESPN. There’s a real possibility that Embiid could make his return after missing eight games with Covid.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) November 26, 2021
Even though Embiid could understandably need a bit of time to get back in prime condition and find his rhythm again, his return will obviously make a huge difference, giving the team their leading scorer and the kind of rim protecting defensive anchor they’ve been missing.
Harris has mostly been having a strong season as well. He’s only appeared in 11 games so far, but he’s averaging career-highs in points (20.6), rebounds (8.3) and assists (4.1) per game.
While the Sixers only went 2-7 in the last nine games without Embiid and various other starters and backups, there have still been real positives to take away. With the bench continuing to play well and Tyrese Maxey making a seriously impressive leap in his larger role (he’s averaged 23.7 points with 48.8/42.1/91.1 shooting splits in Embiid’s absence), the development of the team’s young players and depth should be a major strength to support their starters when everyone is healthy.
Hopefully for the Sixers, Embiid and Harris will be good to go on Saturday and the team can finally get on a roll at full strength.