Joel Embiid was ruled out at halftime Monday night with right knee soreness, according to a Sixers official.
He fell hard attempting to score over Robin Lopez during Game 4 of the team’s first-round series against the Wizards.
The MVP finalist initially stayed in the game, playing all but the final 36.5 seconds of the first quarter, then headed to the locker room at Capital One Arena. Dwight Howard and Mike Scott spelled Embiid in the second quarter, and Scott started the second half at center.
Embiid averaged 29.3 points and shot 67.4 percent from the floor in the series’ first three games. He was especially brilliant in leading the Sixers to a blowout Game 3 win, scoring a playoff career-high 36 points on 14-for-18 shooting.
After that game, he emphasized the importance of finishing off the Wizards as early as possible.
“There’s nothing to be happy about it,” he said Saturday night. “We’ve got to close out this series. We’ve got to get one more win and then worry about the rest later. We’ve got a goal. And to get to that goal, we’ve got to take it one game at a time. There’s no reason to be happy with where we are. We just want to take it step by step and make sure we don’t skip any to accomplish our goal.”
The Sixers in the regular season were 13.0 points better per 100 possessions with Embiid on the court than with him off it, per Cleaning the Glass. The team went 10-11 in the 21 regular-season games he missed.
Embiid suffered a left knee bone bruise on March 12 in Washington, an injury that sidelined him for 10 games. The Sixers managed to go 7-3 during that stretch.