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The Philadelphia 76ers planned to play without Joel Embiid on Monday night as they host the New York Knicks. Considering Embiid played three games in six nights, including a back-to-back last Wednesday and Thursday, the Sixers decided to give the All-Star center a rest night on Monday before facing the Milwaukee Bucks on Tuesday.

However, Embiid is likely to miss both matchups and could potentially miss up to at least ten days' worth of action as he's entered the NBA's health and safety protocol.

According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, Embiid will take two COVID-19 tests over the next 24 hours. If they both come back negative, he'll be eligible to return sooner than later. Judging based on Doc Rivers' latest health update regarding Embiid, it seems that it's a longshot the center is back in the mix this week.

"He's not doing great," said Rivers during his pregame press conference on Monday ahead of the Sixers' matchup with the Knicks. "He's struggling with it, very similar to Tobias. So, you know, it's all I can tell you."

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Last Monday, Sixers veteran forward Tobias Harris tested positive for COVID-19 ahead of Philly's matchup against the Portland Trail Blazers. Two nights after entering the NBA's health and safety protocol, Rivers confirmed that Harris was symptomatic and not feeling great. Now, Embiid is apparently feeling the same way one week later.

Playing without Embiid is certainly not ideal for the Sixers -- especially because they are currently missing players such as Harris, Matisse Thybulle, Isaiah Joe, and Ben Simmons. But Rivers mentioned that the Sixers aren't worried about who they don't have since the season continues no matter what on Monday.

"We just play," said Rivers. "Georges Niang jokingly said today before we even knew about Joel, walked out during shootaround, and said, 'How many guys do we have today to win?' That was his comment today, and that's been our whole thought. I guarantee you Thibs and the Knicks are not going to feel bad for us when the game starts. We understand that, and we need to keep trying to find ways to play to win, score, and do whatever we have to. We've done that thus far. I mean, obviously losing Joel, without Tobias, without Matisse, we get thin. But at the end of the day, we're going to play, and we're going to compete."

The Joel Embiid-less Sixers and the Knicks will tip-off at 7 pm on Monday night.

Justin Grasso covers the Philadelphia 76ers for Sports Illustrated. You can follow him for live updates on Twitter: @JGrasso_