Updated, 5:35 p.m.
After appearing like Joel Embiid would play in his first game in Denver vs. Nikola Jokic and the Nuggets since 2019, the reigning MVP was a late scratch with left knee soreness.
Embiid is out with left knee soreness, source says. Sixers training staff had concerns while watching Embiid during his warm-up routine and made decision for him to sit out vs. Denver today, sources said. Sixers are without Embiid, Tyrese Maxey and Tobias Harris. https://t.co/tWBqfQ6RPw— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 27, 2024
Tyrese Maxey has been ruled out due to a left ankle sprain. Tobias Harris is also unable to suit up for a second straight game due to an illness.
So the Sixers are set to take on the defending champs down four starters along with a good chunk of bench players. De’Anthony Melton has been on the shelf nearly this entire month with a back injury. Robert Covington has also been out long term with a knee injury. Mo Bamba also remains out.
The team may get Marcus Morris Sr. back after missing the previous two games due to an illness and a foot issue.
Morris will get the start in place of Harris. Patrick Beverley, Nicolas Batum, Kelly Oubre, Jr. and Paul Reed fill out the rest of the starting unit. Danuel House, Jr., KJ Martin, Jaden Springer and Furkan Korkmaz should be available off the bench. Two-way players Ricky Council IV and Terquavion Smith are also with the team and active.
In any case, the Sixers certainly have an uphill battle ahead of them this afternoon.