In the (not even full) five days since word of Joel Embiid’s stress fracture in his foot came out, and the first few picks of the draft went from “set” to “utter mayhem.” Embiid’s status as the #1 pick is more or less gone, and it looks likely that the Sixers will miss out on taking their man Andrew Wiggins or Jabari Parker unless they trade up. Why? Because not only will Embiid likely not be the top pick, according to the owner of the Bucks he won’t be the number two pick either.
That would seem to make the top two picks in the draft some combination of Parker/Wiggins, leaving the Sixers at number three with possibly the hardest decision in the top five. Do you take a PG like Exum? Do you make a trade and try to get up and get Wiggins? Or, as the latest report surmises, do you take Embiid, now that you know, for sure, that he will fall to you? Embiid’s injury is certainly a misstep and could cause issues for him for the rest of his career, but the dude was gonna be the consensus number one for a reason.
That amount of upside is a steal at number three, but do you take the injury risk? And do you really delay your rebuild another full year while you now wait for your other top draft pick to be healthy? The mock draft pros seem to lean towards the Sixers snagging Exum at three, but all that matters is what the Sixers actually decide, and at least Bob Cooney thinks that decision could be Embiid.