Joel Embiid has torn meniscus in left knee, no surgery thought needed

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Joel Embiid has missed 10 of the last 11 Sixers games with what the team has described as a knee contusion.

However, Derek Bodner, who writes for the USA Today and DraftExpress, broke the news on his own website that the Sixers have found a torn meniscus in his left knee, although not one bad enough to require surgery.

Joel Embiid has a torn meniscus in his left knee, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the situation.

The tear was discovered after Embiid underwent an MRI following a 93-92 victory on January 20th over the Portland Trailblazers. Embiid left the game in the third quarter with a left knee contusion after landing awkwardly following a drive to the basket….

The tear is a low-grade tear and is not expected to require surgical intervention. It is unclear whether the tear is contributing to the soreness and swelling which has kept Embiid out of 11 of the last 12 games, including the last 8 in a row.

Sixers GM Bryan Colangelo confirmed this to CSNPhilly.com.

“On the MRI that was conducted shortly after the injury vs. Portland, the MRI revealed obviously what we thought it to be — a bone bruise,” Colangelo said before the Sixers’ game against Miami on Saturday.

“There was also the recognition that there was a very minor meniscal tear. But it was not thought to be acute and it was not thought to be the source of the pain, inflammation or symptoms. That is the case.”

Embiid himself called this a bone bruise and told CSNPhilly.com he is not ready to return.

“I’m not healthy,” Embiid said. “Got to take care of my knee, this bone bruise. It’s been on and off. Work out and then swells up a little but and then got to slow it down. Like I said, it’s all about patience. But no, I’m not healthy … I’m not able to play right now.”

If this is a mild tear as reported, it’s not a long-term issue and unrelated to the foot issues that sidelined him for the first two seasons. Meaning, this is the kind of thing that could happen to anyone.

It is a blow to the Sixers, who are 1-6 in their last seven games without him. Also, it seems unlikely he participates in any of the All-Star weekend activities — he was scheduled to be part of the Friday night rising stars game and the Saturday skills competition.