Thursday’s NBA Injury Report: Betting, DFS Impact of Joel Embiid Injury
- The NBA Injury Report is a daily piece that runs through the slate's key injuries and their betting and DFS impact.
- This piece will detail the impact of the injury to Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid.
Thursday’s NBA slate features six games with a plethora of injuries and questionable players. We’ll analyze tonight’s most important situation:
- Miami Heat at Philadelphia 76ers: 7 p.m. ET
Injuries: Joel Embiid (knee) and Furkan Korkmaz (knee) are out.
Injury background: Embiid will be re-evaluated next week after experiencing soreness in his left knee.
Korkmaz was diagnosed with a torn meniscus in his right knee. The injury reportedly occurred February 12. The Sixers haven’t provided a timetable for his return.
Embiid’s absence this season has resulted in a 1-3 record. The Sixers allowed 129, 123 and 126 points in the losses — all in regulation. Their four opponents averaged 63.5 points in the paint and out-rebounded the Sixers by a combined 56 boards. It’s a bleak picture.
The Sixers’ Defensive Rating has dropped to 116.2 — the ninth percentile per Cleaning the Glass — with Embiid on the bench. They’ve played 142 total possessions with their current roster minus Embiid, and their Defensive Rating has spiked to 126.3 in those limited minutes.
Boban Marjanovic or Jonah Bolden will likely start at center since Amir Johnson last played January 26 — the last time Embiid sat. Bolden has accumulated four straight DNP-CDs since Marjanovic’s debut, but coach Brett Brown is still tinkering with the rotation following the recent trades.
Marjanovic costs no more than $3,800 on DraftKings and FanDuel, making him a valuable punt option at center. His per-minute numbers suggest he’ll be the chalk, and his size makes him the lead candidate to start opposite Hassan Whiteside.
In four games without Embiid, opposing starting centers have averaged 47.69 DraftKings points in 30.1 minutes per game — boosted by Nikola Jokic’s triple-double. Whiteside’s minutes are too volatile to trust him in cash games, but his upside is immense and his salary has declined to $6,700 on DraftKings after consecutive games with fewer than 20 DraftKings points.
Bam Adebayo is a potential pivot from Marjanovic, as both cost $3,500 on DraftKings, and Adebayo may play more minutes than Marjanovic and Whiteside.
The Sixers are presently favored by 6.5 points at home, moving from 6 when the line opened. It’ll be Embiid’s first game sidelined since the Sixers acquired Tobias Harris, which alters the equation and gives the Sixers more offensive punch.
The Heat’s implied total of 106.25 appears low based on Philly’s play sans Embiid. However, the Heat have averaged 102.4 points per game during Goran Dragic’s extended absence. That figure has budged since Dion Waiters made his season debut at the beginning of January.