This just sucks.
Joel Embiid was on track to be the No. 1 (or at worst No. 2) pick in the 2014 NBA draft, until concerns with his foot needing surgery had him fall to the Sixers at No. 3. He missed all of last season recovering from that injury (although by May both his agent and the team said he was back to “playing basketball”), however, a recent setback raised concern that the recovery had gone well off track.
It has — Embiid is going to need another foot surgery and likely will miss the entire 2015-16 NBA season, reports Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer.
The 7-footer will have a second surgery after the latest setback in the healing of his right foot, according to several NBA sources. The team will decide whether to have it in North Carolina or at the New York Hospital of Special Surgery
“I would say there’s a great possibility that Embiid won’t play next year,” the source said. “Just think how long they sat him when they thought he was healthy.”
The need for surgery has been confirmed by John Gonzalez of CSNPhilly.com. However, Gonzalez notes that the timeline for Embiid’s recovery is unknown — it will depend on what the surgeons find and need to do — and he could potentially return next season.
Whatever the case could this now be career threatening? Maybe. Sixers fans have reason to be concerned. Chronic foot issues and NBA big men — whose job requires running up and down a hardwood floor — are a terrible mix.
The Sixers drafted Jahlil Okafor with the No. 3 pick this year and he will play along the front line with Nerlens Noel (who sat out his first year after knee surgery but played last season). Those two with Embiid could have made a formidable front line rotation for years to come.
Now you have to wonder if we’ll ever see it.
Dario Saric was selected with the 12th overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, but the plan was for him to remain in Europe for at least two more seasons.
That’s probably part of the reason the rebuilding Sixers traded for him on draft night, given their propensity for selecting players who aren’t ready to contribute to the team’s win total in the immediate future.
Saric, however, was ready to make the jump now. But he couldn’t get out of his current contract in order to make that happen.
From David Pick at Basketball Insiders:
“Saric told people he wanted to join Philadelphia now, but couldn’t because his contract had no out-clause,” a source told Basketball Insiders.
Despite the Sixers’ late push to bring him over as soon as possible, negotiations with Turkish finalist Anadolu Efes failed to materialize. Saric is handcuffed overseas until 2016, but it was clear, sources familiar with his wishes said, that he wanted to join Philadelphia.
I asked Saric for his thoughts about moving to the U.S. and the situation with his Turkish club.
“It’s really hard for me to answer that,” Saric said. “I can’t comment.”
Tanking jokes aside, the Sixers did seem to want to add Saric to the roster this season. It’s time to start developing all that young talent in order to begin to turn things around — even though the 6’10” power forward is a duplication of sorts, alongside Nerlens Noel, Joel Embiid and the newly-drafted Jahlil Okafor.
On draft night two years ago, the Philadephia 76ers traded Jrue Holiday to the New Orleans Pelicans for Nerlens Noel. In those two years, Holiday has been healthy enough to play in 74 games, missing 41 games his first year after the trade due to a stress fracture in his right leg that required surgery.
The NBA says that the Sixers knew about a stress fracture in Holiday’s leg but didn’t disclose it — and they fined the Sixers for it, according to the Philadelphia Enquirer.
The 76ers were ordered to pay the New Orleans Pelicans $3 million by the NBA last season for not fully disclosing Jrue Holiday’s injury history before he was traded two years ago, according to two sources….
The sources said Holiday played with stress fractures in his lower right leg during his final season with the Sixers. However, the sources said, those injures weren’t fully disclosed to the Pelicans.
The Sixers, of course, deny this. Also, the Pelicans gave Holiday a physical before the trade went through.
However, the NBA felt strongly enough about it after looking at the evidence to fine Philadephia for its actions.
Interestingly, the Sixers are trying to get the league to look closely at what the Lakers knew before trading Andrew Bynum to them back in 2012, according to the same report. Bynum never played a minute for the Sixers.