NBA 2022: Joel Embiid sidelined by broken face injury in huge blow to Philadelphia Sixers, playoffs

The Philadelphia 76ers have been dealt a huge playoffs blow with star big man Joel Embiid ruled out indefinitely with a nasty injury.

The Philadelphia 76ers’ playoff hopes have suffered a body blow as star centre Joel Embiid was sidelined indefinitely after being diagnosed with an orbital fracture and concussion, reports said.

Embiid was injured near the end of the Sixers’ series-clinching blowout of the Toronto Raptors on Friday.

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Embiid left the court clutching his face after appearing to be struck by a Pascal Siakam elbow as the Raptors ace drove to the basket.

ESPN and The Athletic both reported Embiid was concussed in the incident and also suffered an orbital fracture near his right eye.

Embiid suffered a similar injury in 2018 to his left eye that required surgery and led to a three-week lay-off. He eventually returned wearing a protective mask.

The Sixers did not immediately comment on the reported injury.

Embiid, seen by many as the frontrunner for this season’s NBA MVP award, has already been struggling during the playoffs with a torn ligament in his right thumb.

The injury came with the Sixers leading by 29 points late in the fourth quarter.

Moments before the incident, Embiid had incensed Raptors fans at the Scotiabank Arena after performing an exuberant “airplane” celebration following a basket.

The Sixers open their Eastern Conference semi-final series against top seeds Miami on Tuesday.

He is expected to be listed as out for the game and there is no timeline yet on when he will return to the court.

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