The Sixers Won’t Have Joel Embiid Or Ben Simmons, But Will Play On Saturday After Barely Making The Roster Minimum

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The Philadelphia 76ers, in the face of a COVID-19 crisis within the team, will play a basketball game on Saturday afternoon. The team is going to take on the Denver Nuggets in a game that should be exciting under most circumstances, but is going to look awfully different due to roster issues in the City of Brotherly Love.

Earlier in the day on Saturday, it looked the game might not even happen due to Philadelphia’s issues with players and staffers quarantining following positive tests within the club, most notably by sharpshooting guard Seth Curry. Ultimately, it was determined the game would be played despite the fact that a quartet of players — Tobias Harris, Shake Milton, Vincent Poirier, and Matisse Thybulle — are out so they can quarantine.

76ers’ Tobias Harris, Shake Milton, Matisse Thybulle and Vincent Poirier are each out today vs. Denver due to health and safety protocols and will receive quarantine period, sources tell @TheAthleticNBA @Stadium.

— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) January 9, 2021

Philly was barely able to make the NBA’s roster minimum, though, of eight players, but right after that became official, word came out that both Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons would be out due to injury.

76ers stars Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons are out today vs. Denver due to injury, sources tell @TheAthleticNBA @Stadium.

— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) January 9, 2021

Sixers are planning to list Embiid out with back tightness and Simmons with left knee swelling, sources tell ESPN. Neither will play today. Mike Scott will be upgraded to available, source said.

— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 9, 2021

As Wojnarowski mentioned in his tweet, Philly upgraded veteran forward Mike Scott to active in an attempt to have eight players, the bare minimum that a team can have to play a basketball game. Rivers did, however, mention that there is almost no circumstance where Scott, who has been dealing with a knee injury, will take the floor.

Doc Rivers says he has eight active players, one of which is Mike Scott, who won't play.

— Rich Hofmann (@rich_hofmann) January 9, 2021

Rivers also made it a point to say that, while the decision is out of his hands, he does not believe the game should be played.

Doc Rivers: “I don't think we should (play). But it's not for me to express that. I do worry about our player health.”

— Derek Bodner (@DerekBodnerNBA) January 9, 2021

Doc Rivers says “I don't think we should” be playing, but that it isn't up to him to decide that. He reiterates he's concerned about the health of his available players, and the minutes the healthy guys are going to have to play.

— Tim Bontemps (@TimBontemps) January 9, 2021

The Sixers’ roster for the game will be as follows: Tony Bradley, Danny Green, Dwight Howard, Isaiah Joe, Dakota Mathias, Tyrese Maxey, Paul Reed, and Scott. The game will tip off at 3 p.m. EST.

Source: The Sixers Won’t Have Joel Embiid Or Ben Simmons, But Will Play On Saturday After Barely Making The Roster Minimum

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Written by Bill DiFilippo

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