By Tommy Matthews
Sixers center Joel Embiid finally addressed the elephant in the room.
Would he play in Sunday’s All-Star Game Sunday night in Salt Lake City?
“I’m not sure,” he said after collecting 29 points, 14 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 steals and a block in 39 minutes against Cleveland.
“I’m not healthy. I haven’t been healthy for the past three weeks, or month. I was just trying to get to the All-Star break without missing games and stuff. But I feel like I’ve reached the point where I need to follow the doctor’s advice. … Back then he said I should have been sitting for two weeks, so we’ll see how the next few days go, and go from there.”
Embiid was questionable to play against Cleveland because of left foot soreness — the exact designation he has had for the past several games. He played in each of them, but only after testing his foot out pregame and getting the go ahead by the team about 30 minutes before tipoff.
“I haven’t been healthy,” he said. “I’ve been having this lingering foot issue. According to the doctors, which needs a lot of rest and staying off my feet.
“Like I said, the focus is on winning, especially getting ready for the second half of the season and the playoffs. I’m focused on winning a championship. If that helps me get there healthy, then that’s what I’m going to do. I’m just going to see how it goes.”
Staying healthy has been a top focus for Embiid throughout the season, and he has said on multiple occasions he hopes to avoid the kind of freak injuries that have plagued him in the past — particularly in the postseason.