NEW YORK — Despite an injury scare right before halftime, Joel Embiid almost lifted the Philadelphia 76ers to victory over the New York Knicks in Game 1 of the Sixers' first-round series. Unfortunately for the Sixers, they failed to finish the job and now have to worry about Embiid's left knee for the rest of the playoffs.

A dominant first half for Embiid was interrupted when he came down hard on a self-alley-oop dunk, which sent him to the locker room with over two minutes left in the half. He landed right on his left knee, instantly wincing in pain and laying down on the court as play resumed.

Embiid has worked diligently to get back onto the court for the 76ers after missing two months due to a left meniscus procedure. But he has already had numerous moments where it looks like he aggravated his injury again. Will the Sixers consider shutting Embiid down for the rest of the season to avoid any further risk?

“I don't think so,” head coach Nick Nurse said. “Listen, he's really a warrior and he's battling. I think he absolutely wants to play, but let's see how he turns out here tonight.”

As made apparent in Nurse's answer, the 76ers believe they have a chance to compete for a championship this season and thus will not outright sideline Embiid unless something is significantly wrong with his knee.

In a media availability the day after Game 1, Nurse said that Embiid told him that his knee is doing “pretty good.” He also indicated that Embiid's eye is not injured despite the big man holding his face several times throughout the game.

Joel Embiid suffers knee injury scare in Game 1 of 76ers' series vs. Knicks

Nurse didn’t have a specific update on Embiid after the game, saying that he would get evaluated as normal before Monday night’s Game 2. The big man took the court for the second half just before the game resumed, which did not take Nurse by surprise.

“I knew when I went in at halftime that they were checking him out and that he was up and moving,” Nurse said, adding that the medical staff “just took him kind of all the way to the end there” to make sure he was ready to stay in.

Joel Embiid played 20 minutes in the second half after just 16 in the first, recording 29 points, eight rebounds, six assists and two steals on 8-22 shooting from the field. The 76ers outscored the Knicks by 14 points during his minutes but were outscored by 21 when he was on the bench.

Tyrese Maxey didn’t see how Embiid fell but said that he wasn’t surprised that Embiid got back out on the court, calling him a “fighter” who is always there to give it his all for the 76ers.

“It's tough seeing your brother go down and you just kind of feel for him, pray for him and hope he's okay,” Maxey said.And then, we were glad to see him when we got back to the locker room and he said he was gonna go back out there and give it a try. Hats off to him, his determination and his will to win.”

After the Sixers play the Knicks on Monday, Embiid will have two days rest between both Games 2 and 3 and Games 3 and 4. While that isn’t much time for him to get totally right — especially with New York's nonstop, aggressive style of play — it should be helpful before Philly has to defend its home court.