Joel Embiid returned to action on Tuesday night after a nine-game absence because of a torn ligament in the ring finger on his left hand. He wasn’t wearing his normal No. 21.
Embiid wore No. 24 for the Sixers’ game vs. the Warriors in honor of Kobe Bryant.
Joel Embiid was approved to wear #24 tonight, in honor of Kobe Bryant. pic.twitter.com/OPcWsEBSU2— NBC Sports Philadelphia (@NBCSPhilly) January 29, 2020
On Sunday, Bryant, his 13-year-daughter Gianna and seven others tragically passed away in a helicopter crash.
No. 24 is already retired by the Sixers and hangs in the rafters at Wells Fargo Center, meaning Embiid had to clear the move with Hall of Fame forward Bobby Jones.
Embiid and Jones had a conversation about the decision, a team source told NBC Sports Philadelphia, and Jones was fully on board.
Last year, Embiid told Bleacher Report's Howard Beck, "The first player I fell in love with was Kobe."
Zhaire Smith, who in the past has worn No. 8, sported No. 7.
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