The Sixers locked up the #3 seed in the Eastern Conference this weekend, which means tonight’s game in Miami and tomorrow’s home finale against Chicago are utterly meaningless.
As such, Joel Embiid and JJ Redick will not play tonight, listed as OUT on the NBA’s most recent injury report. The entire thing looks like this:
- Jonah Bolden – questionable (sore left knee)
- Joel Embiid – out (left knee soreness)
- James Ennis – out (right quad contusion)
- Furkan Korkmaz – questionable (right knee surgery)
- JJ Redick – out (back tightness)
That’s actually an upgrade for Furkan, who underwent meniscus surgery and hasn’t played since February.
But I wouldn’t stop there, I’d add the following to the injury report, after the jump:
- Tobias Harris – out (gastoenteritis)
- Ben Simmons – out (gastoenteritis)
- Jimmy Butler – out (gastoenteritis)
- Mike Scott – out (gastoenteritis)
One, if Embiid and Redick are out, there’s no point playing anybody else who will be in the playoff rotation. This starting unit needs minutes together, and if you can rest everybody tonight and give them 12-14 first half minutes together tomorrow night, then I’d do it.
As it stands, the Sixers’ starting unit:
- has only played ten games and 161 total minutes together
- they are a +75 in those 161 minutes with an 8-2 record
- they have a 17.6 net rating
It’s a top-heavy Sixers team with a dominant starting unit. If these five aren’t gonna play together tonight, just rest them. Don’t give me Harris and Simmons and Butler without Embiid and Redick. Tobias and Ben could use a break just as much as anybody on this team.
Two, Miami is still alive in the playoff race, but they need to win their two remaining games. They play Brooklyn to finish the season on a back-to-back. Brooklyn losing and Orlando winning would have the Sixers play the Magic instead of the Nets.
So if you’re one of those people who feels like the Sixers square up better against Orlando, Miami winning tonight gives them more of an incentive to knock off Brooklyn in the finale, which would help move the Magic into 6th place.
Something to think about, ya know? The Heat can technically be eliminated tonight if other things happen, so they’re hanging by a thread, but stranger things have happened. We all saw what the Flyers did back in 2010.
Right, so I’d just sit the entire damn team tonight. I’d roll out this as my rotation:
- Shake Milton
- Zhaire Smith
- Haywood Highsmith
- Jonathon Simmons
- Greg Monroe
- Amir Johnson
- T.J. McConnell
That’s it. Sit everybody else, give them some minutes tomorrow night, and then we’re rocking and rolling into the playoffs.
The Celtics are doing it the right way:
Celtics (lengthy) injury report for season finale. pic.twitter.com/PulgOYSvnI
— Chris Forsberg (@ChrisForsberg_) April 8, 2019