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Joel Embiid out against Knicks as ongoing evaluation on shoulder continues

Sixers, Joel Embiid, Knicks

Sixers All-Star Joel Embiid will be held out of Thursday night’s matchup against the Knicks as he seeks further evaluation on his shoulder sprain.

ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski shared news of Embiid’s status on Thursday afternoon:

Embiid left Wednesday night’s 108-94 loss to the Cavs during the first quarter and did not return to play. The Cameroonian big man collided with Cavs Center Ante Zizic. At this point, it’s not clear how long Embiid will be out of commission.

“I’m really unsure,” Sixers head coach Brett Brown told ESPN. “It’s not coach-speak, but this is part of the NBA landscape. That’s why you try to accumulate talent and depth.”

Following Wednesday’s matchup in Cleveland, Embiid was spotted wearing a sling and dealing with a fair amount of pain. According to ESPN, he declined to speak with reporters, and he asked his trainer to carry his luggage out of the locker room. He is expected to undergo an MRI exam at some point on Thursday.

Without question, Embiid is a key piece of Philadelphia’s playoff aspirations. In his 43 appearances this season, he’s racked up averages of 23.3 points on 47.2 percent shooting from the field (34.2 percent from beyond the arc), 11.8 rebounds, 3.1 assists and 1.3 blocks in 30.3 minutes per outing.

Big man Al Horford noted that the Sixers were out of sorts once Embiid left Wednesday’s game:

“Obviously, we play through him and once he was out, we didn’t really know what was next,” said Horford, via ESPN. “We didn’t quite know how to play. We have to figure out how to play without him.”

Thursday night’s Sixers-Knicks matchup is scheduled to tip inside the Wells Fargo Center at 7:00 p.m. ET.

Hopefully, Embiid will be back on the floor sooner rather than later.