LAS VEGAS — It’s been pretty fortunate this year, there have been no major injuries out of Summer League. Some muscle tweaks and a few sprains, but guys are going hard (these guys are competing for their next payday) and there have been some rough spills but nothing serious.
This may have been the worst one — Suns center Alec Brown dislocated his shoulder Friday in the Suns’ loss to the Dallas Mavericks, the team confirmed.
He was in clear pain when it happened, grabbing his shoulder and going back straight to the locker room. A dislocation is something that can usually heal in a couple weeks.
Brown, a second round pick of the Suns in this draft (50th overall) is a 7’1” center known for his ability to shoot from distance — he was one of the standout shooters of any size at the NBA Draft Combine. However, he missed his first 11 shots in Las Vegas. He’s looked better since.
Brown will be in the Suns training camp and with Channing Frye gone the Suns need a floor-spacing big man. Brown wants to be that guy. This injury shouldn’t set him back from that.
Joel Embiid on Monday will have an MRI on his injured left knee and is now listed as out indefinitely.
Embiid has been experiencing swelling and soreness in the left knee injury that has caused him to miss 16 out of the last 17 games. Bryan Colangelo announced back on Feb. 11 that Embiid has a minor meniscal tear. In his most recent press conference last Friday, Colangelo had targeted this Friday’s home game against the Knicks as a possibility for Embiid’s return. Now, that isn’t the case.
Embiid had been the biggest ray of hope for Philadelphia, but the 76ers shouldn’t chase watchability down the stretch. Sit Embiid until he’s fully healthy and secure the best draft position possible.
Maybe Embiid’s body just can’t handle the rigors of NBA basketball, but Philadelphia has no choice but to hope for the best with him and Simmons. And hope the nail the their first-round pick this year and get the Lakers’ first-rounder.
This could still be a dangerously good team in coming years. The Process created that potential.
But the threat of injury always looms around the corner, maybe especially so for Embiid.
Report: Knicks’ Joakim Noah likely to miss rest of season after knee surgery
Prepare for the talk next fall about Noah feeling refreshed and ready to help the Knicks.
But this surgery won’t reverse the underlying problem: Noah is a 31-year-old big man with heavy mileage. He can manage his knees, but it’s probably too late for him to regain enough athleticism to reliably contribute.
Just three years and $55 million+ remaining on his contract, which already looked like the NBA’s worst deal and is now even more unfavorable.
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