Will Joel Embiid Play Tonight? Philadelphia 76ers vs Denver Nuggets: Injury Updates, Lineups, and Game Prediction

Published 01/09/2021, 10:00 AM EST
Dec 23, 2020; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (21) reacts to a scored against the Washington Wizards during the fourth quarter at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports


Fans are excited to witness a battle between two of the best centers in the league. That’s exactly what we’ll see when the Philadelphia 76ers take on the Denver Nuggets on Saturday. It is an important fixture for both teams and they’ll head into the game knowing that a victory won’t be straightforward. 

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Venue: Wells Fargo Center

Time: 3:00 PM ET (January 9, 2021) 

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The Nuggets vs Sixers is an exciting matchup and these two teams are taking on each other for the first time in the 2021 regular-season. With two dominant players spearheading either franchise, who will come out on top when they meet at the Wells Fargo Center? 

Philadelphia 76ers vs Denver Nuggets – Injury Updates and Lineups

Sixers

The Sixers have been extremely dominant so far, and they’ve constructed a winning rhythm with their impressive run. Joel Embiid has been filling up the stat lines like its nobody’s business, and the scarier part is that Ben Simmons is not yet at his best for the 76ers. 

Dec 27, 2020; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons (25) drives to the basket against Cleveland Cavaliers forward Larry Nance Jr. (22) during the second quarter at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Hence, they’re a team full of promise once again, but the pandemic seems to be putting a halt to their rhythm. Combo guard Seth Curry recently tested positive for COVID-19, hence he will be out till he comes back negative. 

Moreover, Curry was in close contact with his teammates before being confirmed for his positive test, which has now triggered so many complications. On the injury list, the Philadelphia 76ers have Furkan Korkmaz, and Seth Curry, Mike Scott, and Terrance Ferguson confirmed to be out against the Nuggets on Saturday. But there’s more to that. 

Seth Curry’s positive test, while in close contact with his teammates, has now led to NBA contact tracing, and there are several players involved. Moreover, this also puts their participation in Saturday’s game as questionable! 

Joel Embiid, Matisse Thybulle, Tobias Harris, Paul Reed, Vincent Poirier, Shake Milton, and Danny Green were the ones listed as probable for the Nuggets game due to health and safety protocols. However, per a recent update from Adrian Wojnarowski, Embiid, Reed, and Green are cleared to play.  

Possible Lineup

Ben Simmons (G)

Shake Milton (G) (Day-to-Day)

Danny Green (F) 

Tobias Harris (F) (Day-to-Day)

Joel Embiid (C) 

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Nuggets

Fortunately for the Nuggets, they don’t have too many complications facing their way. Denver too is affected by the coronavirus, but only Michael Porter Jr. is sidelined due to health and safety protocols. 

Besides the forward, the Denver Nuggets have a solid lineup at their disposal against a weakened Philadelphia 76ers team. 

Possible Lineup

Jamal Murray (G)

Gary Harris (G)

Will Barton (F)

Paul Millsap (F)

Nikola Jokic (C) 

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Prediction

First things first, this game has severely been hindered by the pandemic. With all the players that are questionable at the moment, the 76ers just have nine healthy players on their roster, which is not what Doc Rivers would want.

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However, Philly will be ready for the Nuggets encounter with their best players on the court. Hence, this fixture will indeed be exciting, as two of the most talented guards and two dominant centers will go head-to-head.

Dec 28, 2020; Denver, Colorado, USA; Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic (15) shoots over Houston Rockets forward Christian Wood (35) in the first quarter at Ball Arena. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

We undoubtedly have an exciting fixture on cards, but only time will tell how things will move forward. If the 76ers do get their full roster cleared, they have a chance of defeating the Nuggets, but it will be a hard-fought encounter indeed.

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Arjun Athreya

2029 articles

Arjun Athreya is a senior writer at Essentially Sports and has been contributing since early 2020. Having developed an avid interest in sports at an early age, he pursued a Journalism degree and graduated from Madras Christian College. Arjun manages the Golf division and its content, and primarily covers news pertaining to the NBA as well.

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