The 76ers recently announced that Joel Embiid, the No. 3 overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, will miss the entire 2015-16 season due to another injury to his right foot. It turns out Embiid broke the same right navicular bone that caused him to sit out his rookie year, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer's Bob Cooney.
That initial injury was first discovered by the Cavaliers during a physical a week before the 2014 NBA Draft. Philadelphia general manager Sam Hinkie still elected to draft Embiid, who also missed the final month of his lone season at Kansas due to a stress fracture in his back. Embiid then had two screws inserted into his right navicular bone, which is located in the inner-top half of the foot, and spent the entire 2014-15 rehabbing the injury. Now it appears he will be going through that same process again.
"A collective decision has been made that the best approach to promote full healing would be to proceed with a bone graft of the fracture site," Hinkie said in a statement last week. "We anticipate the procedure will take place in the next seven to 10 days and result in Joel missing the upcoming season."
The Sixers are "concerned that this setback is career-threatening," according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.
It's unclear how Embiid, 21, re-injured his foot. The injury was discovered in June during a "routine checkup in San Francisco which revealed that Embiid's foot was in worse condition than it had been in his previous evaluation," according to the Inquirer.
Embiid is due to make a guaranteed $4.63 million. The Sixers have the option to pick up the third year of his contract for $4.83 million and the fourth year for $6.1 million.
Philadelphia does have insurance. The Sixers selected center Jahlil Okafor with the No. 3 overall pick of the Draft in June. The team also has the 6'11 Nerlens Noel, the sixth overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft. He averaged 9.9 points and 8.1 rebounds per game last season. "Sam Hinkie and co. do not put all their eggs in one basket, so neither should we," wrote SB Nation's Sixers site Liberty Ballers in an open letter to fans.