Joel Embiid has missed the 76ers last 10 games after suffering an orbital fracture on March 28.
Joel Embiid will play in Game 3 of the 76ers' first-round series against the Heat Thursday, Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports reports.
According to Ramona Shelburne of ESPN.com, Embiid's mask is made from carbon and poly carbonate and has protective eyewear built into it.
Listed as doubtful in the morning, Embiid was upgraded to probable by the 76ers on Thursday afternoon—hours before Game 3 of the Philadelphia-Miami Eastern Conference first-round series.
Embiid participated in the team’s morning shootaround, and apparently coach Brett Brown saw enough from his All-Star center to approve his return. Embiid has missed Philadelphia’s last 10 games while recovering from a concussion and surgery that repaired a fractural orbital bone around his left eye. He’s no longer in the NBA’s concussion protocol, and took to social media after Philadelphia’s Game 2 loss to Miami to announce that he is “sick and tired of being babied.”
Translated: Embiid was declaring himself ready to play, and now the 76ers agree.
“It’s a collaborative thing with Joel and doctors and me,” Brown said. “It’s all this stuff that revolves around comfort, and feeling like we’re responsible with his health, those types of things.”
Embiid wore his protective mask and went through practice Wednesday, getting used to contact again. His initial playoff appearance this year will be the first postseason game of his career.
Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said Miami was prepared for the possibility that Embiid would play Thursday.
“You can’t spend too much time on an uncertainty,” Spoelstra said. “But you have to spend a little bit of time.”
Embiid averaged 22.9 points and 11 rebounds in 63 games this season.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.