Philadelphia 76ers' Joel Embiid needs surgery for facial fracture

WASHINGTON, USA – Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid suffered a left eye orbital fracture when he collided with a teammate and will require surgery, the NBA team said Thursday, March 29.

Embiid was hurt when teammate Markelle Fultz accidentally drove his right shoulder into his face in the first half of Philadelphia's win over the New York Knicks on Wednesday, March 28.

Joel Embiid is out for the game with a facial bruise after colliding with Markelle Fultz on this play. pic.twitter.com/UzAfiuygig — NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) March 29, 2018

Initially diagnosed with a facial contusion, Embiid left the game and didn't return. He was later hospitalized and the Sixers said a CT scan revealed the broken eye socket bone.

Embiid, who passed initial concussion tests in the locker room, has also been diagnosed with a concussion after symptoms developed.

A big hint that the injury was serious had come Wednesday night when Embiid post a brief video of himself in hospital on Instagram captioned "Not Good".

Sixers w/ Joel Embiid (orbital fracture) --111.4 offensive rating (4th, ~Raptors) --99.7 defensive rating (Best in NBA) Sixers w/o Embiid --101.8 offensive rating (27th, ~ Grizzlies) --105.7 defensive rating (14th, ~Lakers) pic.twitter.com/Zc14xXqW1U — Ben Golliver (@BenGolliver) March 30, 2018

"Surgery will be performed in the coming days to address the orbital fracture and further updates will be provided as appropriate," the 76ers said in a statement.

The 76ers were scheduled to travel to Atlanta on Thursday for a Friday game, March 31, against the Hawks. They face the Hornets in Charlotte on Sunday, April 1.

Embiid is averaging 22.9 points, 11 rebounds and 1.8 blocked shots and has been a key factor in putting the Sixers back in the playoffs for the first time in 6 seasons.

Joel Embiid isn't giving up on The Process. pic.twitter.com/9yBAsPTqnm — ESPN (@espn) March 30, 2018

The 24-year-old from Cameroon was taken 3rd overall in the 2014 draft but missed two full seasons as a result of two foot surgeries before he could get his NBA career underway and played just 31 games last season as a knee injury brought his campaign to an early end. – Rappler.com