Joel Embiid suffers bone bruise in knee, is out at least two weeks

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This could have been so much worse.

Joel Embiid left Friday night’s 76ers win over the Wizards after hyperextending his left knee landing from a dunk. An MRI showed that Embiid suffered a bone bruise and will be re-evaluated in two weeks, the team announced.

While no injury is ideal, this is a much better result than what was feared when Embiid went down. These kinds of injuries put the meniscus and other ligaments in the knee at risk (and Embiid tore the lateral meniscus in this same knee back in 2017).

With Embiid out, both the MVP race and the push for the top seed in the East open up — the 76ers are 2-5 in games that Embiid has missed this season.

The injury occurred in the third quarter Friday when Embiid took a pass from Tobias Harris and had a clear path to the rim for a dunk. Washington’s Garrison Mathews went up to contest the shot, and the mid-air contact threw Embiid off balance. Embiid hyper-extended his knee and went straight to the ground when he landed, grabbing his knee in pain.

Embiid eventually left the court under his own power, but limping.

Embiid has been playing at an MVP-level season, averaging 30.2 points a game and being the heart of the Sixers offense, while also playing at a Defensive Player of the Year level on the other end of the court. Philly outscored opponents by 12.4 points per 100 possessions when Embiid is on the court this season but gets outscored by 4.4 when he sits.