James Wiseman made his return to the Warriors -- and to Golden State's starting ufive -- Tuesday against the Philadelphia 76ers, but he still ended up missing out on an opportunity he was looking forward to.
The No. 2 overall pick was disappointed he couldn't face off against four-time NBA All-Star center Joel Embiid, who suffered a bone bruise on his left knee March 13 against the Washington Wizards. The big man landed awkwardly after a dunk attempt and while he will not need surgery, he was ruled out for multiple weeks.
Matching up against Embiid would have been the ultimate test for Wiseman, and the 19-year-old was looking forward to it.
NBC Sports Bay Area's Kerith Burke asked Wiseman after the Warriors' 108-98 loss to the 76ers if he was looking forward to having a chance to go up against Embiid. Wiseman was quick, and emphatic, to answer.
"Yes. Most definitely. Yes," he admitted with a smile.
"He's very versatile to be 7-foot-1 and that big," Wiseman added. "He's very quick for his size. I watched a lot of film ... He's a great player. Even though he wasn't able to play tonight, I will see him soon."
Wiseman will see Embiid soon, indeed. Golden State is scheduled to travel to Philadelphia for a rematch against the 76ers on April 19. It's safe to say the young big man will be just as excited to play against Embiid then.
"I really wanted to play against him," Wiseman said. "That'd be a really fun matchup."
Earlier Tuesday, head coach Steve Kerr said he anticipates Wiseman as the Warriors' starting center for the remainder of the season. Should that be the case, Wiseman and Embiid should be playing against each other for a substantial amount of time during their next contest, provided the latter can return to play.
Expect Wiseman to be counting down the days until then.