NBA

NBA Rumors: Joel Embiid’s Status for ’14-15 Uncertain

Joel Embiid’s status for this season is uncertain… Alec Burks, Enes Kanter talking extensions with Jazz and more!

Yannis Koutroupis profile picture
Updated 12 months ago on
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Joel Embiid’s Status Uncertain

On whether Embiid may play this season: “I don’t know at this point. Right now, he’s in Philly and visiting with a variety of our medical professionals and going through tests. He’ll get a good baseline and then we’ll put together a rehab plan. He’s still in a boot. He was shooting threes on one leg in our gym [Monday]. I don’t know how it will play out. We’ll take an approach without knowing where the finish line is. We want to know how we can be sure to put him in a position to have a long NBA career. However long [rehab] takes will be however long it takes. In my experience with this injury, a very reasonable approach that our medical professionals take is to put these hurdles in place for them to rise above and then measure the symptoms and then let’s see what happens in the days after. Is there tightness or soreness or swelling? Does the MRI or X-ray show something different? When we set that road map, no one knows [how long it will take].”

via Bob Cooney of the Philadelphia Daily News

Given their methodical approach to rebuilding, many expect the Philadelphia 76ers to keep Embiid out for the season much like they did with Nerlens Noel, their top pick in the 2013 NBA Draft. Noel was more than a year removed from tearing his ACL midway through the season, yet despite not having any setbacks, never took the floor during what should have been his rookie season. Instead, he’s making his rookie debut this year.

With the long-term injury concerns that Embiid came with even prior to the broken foot that currently plagues him, sitting out a year could be the best thing for his overall development. It will give him the time to sit back and watch from the sidelines, develop a comfort level with the NBA lifestyle and of course – tweet (Embiid has been one of the most entertaining follows on twitter this offseason).

Even if Embiid were to find himself medically cleared with time still remaining in the season like Noel did, the 76ers aren’t going to be playing for anything at that point. They’re in a position where wins hurt them more than they help, and with a roster that is even less talented than the one that went a historically woeful 19-63. They’re going to be extremely cautious with him, and rightfully so. His potential is too great to risk anything in a major rebuilding year like this.

76ers GM Sam Hinkie’s plan to build for the distant future has often come under criticism, but the end result is likely to make the long wait well worth it, especially if a healthy Joel Embiid is roaming the paint alongside Noel for many years to come.

Kanter, Burks talking extension with Jazz

via Twitter

Earlier on Monday the Morris Twins of the Phoenix Suns, two fellow members of the 2011 NBA Draft class, signed contract extensions. As twins and best friends, they were really motivated to secure long-term deals and the likelihood of spending the next five years of their careers together, even though they probably could have earned a little bit more money by venturing into restricted free agency. In order to come to an agreement with the Jazz, Burks and Kanter will likely have to make similar sacrifices and settle for a smaller pay day now rather than playing out the season with the motivation of increasing their value. That is a a real possibility, though, given their solid, but somewhat modest production up to this point.

The Jazz have invested two first round picks over the last two years in Dante Exum and Rudy Gobert, who play the same positions as Burks and Kanter. Their presence really impacts negotiations, as the Jazz have absolutely no reason right now to spend anything more than market value on Kanter or Burks, since they would only become restricted free agents at season’s end.

We’ve seen the Jazz willing to commit to their players early in the case of Derrick Favors, and even Gordon Hayward, although he decided to hold out for the max, which he did end up receiving. They believe in the core they’re developing and want to keep them intact, but Kanter and Burks may need to prove themselves a bit more before they get the kind of offer they’re hoping for.

David Lee not upset with Warriors’ front office

Warriors forward David Lee heard the offseason trade rumors involving Kevin Love and said they didn’t leave him feeling unwanted by the team.

“There was no hard feelings,” Lee said Monday. “There can’t be. Our front office is trying to improve the team, and Kevin Love is a great player.

“It happened, and I’m not mad at anybody. I don’t feel bad. It’s just this is a business.”

via Diamond Leung of the Contra Costa Times

Warriors guard Klay Thompson, who was also involved in the Kevin Love trade rumors, brushed off the notion that there was any kind of hard feelings as well.

This is important for the Warriors because the disconnect between front office and team, which the importance of could be debated, was growing quickly after a tumultuous offseason that included the dismissal of Mark Jackson, who the Warriors’ players strongly supported.

With Love now a member of the Cleveland Cavaliers and any chance for acquiring him completely out the window, the Warriors can move past that distraction and focus on getting acclimated to new head coach Steve Kerr.

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Yannis Koutroupis is Basketball Insiders' Managing Site Editor and Senior Writer. He has been covering the NBA and NCAA for seven years.

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