'Will get injured walking in his kitchen' - Stephen A's no nonsense take on Joel Embiid's early return from knee injury

On Tuesday night Joel Embiid made his most anticipated return against Oklahoma City Thunder. This is not for the first time Joel Embiid is missing most matches due to injury.

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Varun Sarwate
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On Tuesday night Joel Embiid made his most anticipated return against Oklahoma City Thunder. Due to his knee injury, he missed 29 matches. Even though he was not available for the team for two months’ time he guided Philadelphia 76ers to victory by 109-105. In the game against Oklahoma City Thunder, he played for 29 minutes and scored 24 points, 7 assists and 6 rebounds.  

The veteran analyst discussed Joel Embiid's early comeback on the newest episode of The Stephen A. Smith Show. With Embiid back in the lineup, the ESPN analyst explained how much impact he believes the Sixers can have in the playoffs. There is no doubting that Embiid is a beast on the floor. He was on track to become a back-to-back MVP until being hurt in January. However, Embiid's health has been an Achilles heel throughout his career.

Further he reminded everyone that when he was drafted by Philadelphia 76ers in 2014 he missed two seasons because of fracture in his right foot. Joel Embiid career started with injury. According to Essentially Sports he stated, “This is the brother that literally will get injured walking in his kitchen or walking up the stairs in his house”. That is why Stephen A. feels the Sixers, headed by Joel Embiid, would struggle to beat the Milwaukee Bucks in the first round if they qualify through the play-in round.

Career affected by injuries

This is not for the first time Joel Embiid is missing most matches due to injury. He hasn’t played 82 matches in NBA season due to injury concerns. Joel Embiid made his NBA debut in 2016/17 season as he missed two years due to injury. In his first season he was able to play only 31 games and his average was 20.2 points. In that following season he again got injured and missed 10 games which include two playoffs. In 2018/19 NBA season he missed 14 games due to knee injury. Embiid subsequently missed 51 games over the next two seasons due to left-hand surgery, which was followed by a knee injury in 2021.

Joel Embiid's track record indicates that he can lose substantial time due to injury at any point throughout the season. Stephen A. Smith does not want to believe on a team whose leader may be unavailable for the entire postseason.

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