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Joel Embiid has stress fracture in right foot, scheduled for surgery Friday

Jun 19, 2014, 4:00 PM EDT

Joel Embiid Joel Embiid

Joel Embiid’s draft stock is falling. The question is how far.

Reports of an injury in his foot turned out to take a serious turn and will require surgery, as first reported by Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports.

Joel Embiid has suffered a stress fracture in his right foot and will have surgery Friday, agent Arn Tellem said.

“Joel will be unable to participate in any additional workouts and will not attend the draft in New York,” Tellem said.

The fracture is in the navicular bone, which is on top of the foot above the arch.  This is the same surgery New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady had, it is also the injury Yao Ming, Bill Walton and Zydrunas Ilgauskas had during their careers. That should scare teams.

The surgery will put screws into the bone to secure it. After the surgery Embiid will not be able to put any pressure on the foot for about six weeks, then weight can be added but recovery takes at least four and up to six months.

You can bet whoever drafts him will be thinking long term and be cautious here. Don’t expect to see Embiid on the court until around Christmas at the earliest. Missing much longer is not out of the question, his team may keep him out the entire first season (as the Clippers did with Blake Griffin and the Sixers did last year with Nerlens Noel).

That is not helping the draft stock of a guy that might have gone No. 1 before this all went down.

It is expected the Cavaliers will take either Andrew Wiggins or Jabari Parker with the No. 1 overall pick, the Bucks likely to take the other at No. 2. The Sixers already have Nerlens Noel, might they draft Dante Exum at three (to pair in the backcourt with Michael Carter-Williams) leaving Embiid to drop to the Magic at No. 4 or the Jazz with the No. 5 pick. Either the Celtics (sixth) or Lakers (seventh) would be thrilled to see Embiid fall that far (remember the Lakers drafted Andrew Bynum with knee questions at No. 10 years back).

This injury throws the entire top end of the draft up into the air, as well as raises questions about Embiid’s ceiling and ability to stay healthy. Remember he missed the end of the season with a stress fracture in his lower back. Big men with back and foot injuries give teams pause.

Potential No. 1 pick Joel Embiid suffers stress fracture

  1. tmatic74 - Jun 19, 2014 at 8:56 PM

    I hoped the Sixers learned from blowing the 2nd pick drafting Turner when Cousins was there but had attitude issues. Bad back, broke foot Emiid is still the prize of the draft by a mile. There is no other player in this draft with the potential to dominate on both ends like Embiid. I kept saying my Sixers had no chance at Embiid so today is like Christmas. He is worth all the risk and we still have the 10th pick to fall back on. With Embiid on the board anything else is unacceptable.

    • kastout11 - Jun 20, 2014 at 10:21 AM

      I could not disagree more. I am not sure about you, but I remember the time Andrew Bynum was employed by the Sixers and never suited up. I do not trust injury plagued big guys. It sucks because I wanted Philly to take Parker or Wiggins, and clearly now that will not happen. Tanking for nothing. One good thing is Philly will be a lottery team again next year, so they will not lose the lottery protected pick to Boston.

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