PHILADELPHIA — As the Philadelphia 76ers move forward with their season, they will now have to figure out how they are going to replace what Joel Embiid brings to the table. The big fella will be out at least four weeks after undergoing a procedure to repair a meniscus injury in his left knee.
The Sixers now have to find a way to replace 35.3 points, 11.3 rebounds, and 5.7 assists per game from the center spot. Philadelphia will turn to big men Paul Reed and Mo Bamba in the lineup to replace what Embiid brings to the table.
Neither Reed nor Bamba are the scorers that Embiid is, but coach Nick Nurse has presented an opportunity to those guys and is looking to help them produce without the reigning league MVP. He stated that he had a conversation with both of them to prepare them for this chance.
“100%,” Nurse explained. “I always say the same thing, too, they certainly show flashes of being able to fill in that spot. Other things get re-distributed, but they can hold their own, it’s just that we need consistent night-to-night. Not an incredible game one night and nothing the next. We just need to know you’re gonna rebound and defend your position, right? Any scoring you give us is great. If we need some, help us there.”
On the season, Reed is averaging 6.0 points and 5.0 rebounds while Bamba is averaging 4.3 points and 3.7 rebounds. With Embiid out, the Sixers will turn to Reed as the starter and Bamba as the main backup.
Reed has shown an ability to produce when the time calls for it. Now, he has to be able to do it an extended stretch. As for Bamba, he has the size the Sixers need in certain matchups. They both just need to find consistency.
“We need those two guys,” Nurse added. “Those are the two 5’s we got so we gotta get some production out of them.”
The Sixers will play host to the Golden State Warriors on Wednesday.