We all knew that playing games outside of the bubble would present health challenges for NBA teams this season. But in recent days and weeks, the old-fashioned type of injury bug has also been spreading around the league. To wit:
Joel Embiid, the early MVP favorite, has been out since March 12 with a bone bruise on his knee, a scary-looking injury that thankfully wasn’t worse. Earlier today, the 76ers said they’ll be “extremely cautious” with his return.
According to ESPN, LaMelo Ball will likely see his season come to an end after fracturing his right wrist in Charlotte’s loss to the Clippers on Saturday. Ball was the heavy favorite for the Rookie of the Year award after helping the surging Hornets climb into the Eastern Conference playoff race.
And LeBron James was also injured on Saturday, suffering a high ankle sprain in the Lakers loss to the Hawks that will leave him out of the lineup indefinitely. He joins an All-Star bench that includes Anthony Davis and Marc Gasol, who have missed the last 14 and seven games, respectively.
With injuries to some of the league’s most impactful players, the MVP and playoff races are now both very much in flux. Crafty Nuggets big man Nikola Jokic has moved into pole position in the MVP race while Denver, the Phoenix Suns, and the streaking Mavericks have all taken advantage of their opponent’s limited rotation. While injured teams in the West have struggled, a well-balanced Philly team has the luxury of waiting on Embiid, as they’ve been able to hold onto their lead atop the Eastern Conference and withstand recent hot streaks from the Nets and Bucks.
You’ll have the chance to see the Sixers three times on national television this week, as they head to California to take on the Warriors, Lakers, and Clippers. Check out the full national TV schedule below and use the link at the bottom of the page to get the most NBA on Sling with Orange + Blue and Sports Extras.
National TV games March 22-28
|Monday, March 22|
|9:00 PM||Pacers at Bucks||NBA TV >|
Tuesday, March 23
|7:30 PM||Lakers at Pelicans||TNT >|
|10:00 PM||76ers at Warriors||TNT >|
Wednesday, March 24
|7:30 PM||Celtics at Bucks||ESPN >|
|10:00 PM||Nets at Jazz||ESPN >|
Thursday, March 25
|7:30 PM||Trail Blazers at Heat||TNT >|
|10:00 PM||76ers at Lakers||TNT >|
Friday, March 26
|7:30 PM|| Celtics at Bucks
|10:00 PM||Hawks at Warriors||ESPN >|
Saturday, March 27
|10:00 PM||76ers at Clippers||NBA TV >|
Sunday, March 28
|9:00 PM||Hawks at Nuggets||NBA TV >|
*All games subject to blackout
Find a full schedule of NBA games HERE >
For more on watching NBA Basketball, including with NBA LEAGUE PASS and NBA TEAM PASS, find information HERE >