Miami Heat Playoffs: Joel Embiid Could Return To 76ers For Game 3

Joel Embiid #21 of the Philadelphia 76ers talks to Jimmy Butler #22 of the Miami Heat(Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Joel Embiid #21 of the Philadelphia 76ers talks to Jimmy Butler #22 of the Miami Heat(Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

The Miami Heat, for the most part, have dominated the Philadelphia 76ers through two games. Holding James Harden to a modest 18 points per game average across two games thus far, the Miami Heat are getting the job done on the guy that has been the 76ers’ best player on the court.

Well, that job may have just gotten harder. With Joel Embiid missing the first two games of this series, the big man might be set to make his return and debut in this series on Friday night in Philadelphia for Game 3.

After earlier reporting that indicated that Philly’s star big man had cleared concussion protocol, Shams Charania of The Athletic is now reporting that there is optimism for his return to play. That will surely make things, a bit, more challenging for the Miami Heat squad looking to go up 3-0.

The Miami Heat have dominated Philly through two games of their series so far. However, Joel Embiid could return for Game 3, making things interesting.

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Playing against DeAndre Jordan, who has slotted in as the 6ers starting center, isn’t the same thing as facing off against the guy who could, perhaps should, have been the league’s MVP this season. Though he, expectingly, won’t be at 100 percent in his return, just having him on the floor makes a major difference.

He creates mismatches in the paint and along the perimeter. People classify the Heat as “small”, however, their grit, physicality, and team brand of ball allow them to play bigger than they actually are.

That, alone though, still can be no match at times for Embiid’s combination of sheer size and a multitude of skills on the basketball court. Again though, the question is how much of himself can you expect him to be?

That’s a question that won’t be answered until you see him take the court. Not being able to deal with the light from his phone just a few days ago, as reported by Turner’s Chris Haynes during Game 2, you now have to deal with the lights, sounds, and multiple stimuli of a crowded arena during playoff time.

You then have the physical activity to think about, then the pace of that activity at the NBA level, and most notably, the overall physicality of play. Can he take all that with him just coming to a place of physical comfort?

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We just may see. At least, the reporting says so.