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Matisse Thybulle has dealt with a tough setback early on in the season. After appearing in the first nine games of the Sixers' season, Thybulle became the third player on the team to enter into the NBA's health and safety protocol after Tobias Harris and Isaiah Joe tested positive COVID-19.

In the first game he missed, the Sixers managed to come out on top against the Chicago Bulls without Thybulle in the rotation. But from then on, the Sixers struggled to collect wins consistently as they lost another key member of the roster to the health and safety protocol in Joel Embiid.

Without Embiid and Thybulle, the Sixers went 1-5 through the six-game stretch. For the last couple of matchups, the Sixers were hopeful of getting at least one of them back, if not both. However, the process of getting them cleared by the NBA was taking longer than initially anticipated.

Fortunately, Thybulle found himself upgraded to questionable ahead of Saturday's game against the Portland Trail Blazers. And once he deemed himself ready to return, the Sixers trotted him out on the court for 21 minutes on Saturday night. 

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As expected, Thybulle's return was an uphill battle at first. Since he's been self-isolating at his apartment in Philly while the Sixers traveled all over, the young guard didn't have a lot of resources to work out and stay in shape.

"The pace of this and the pace of what was taking place at my apartment are two different worlds," said Thybulle on Saturday. "So, it's been a little bit of a whirlwind. But it's been good. I was actually pretty surprised at how quickly I could like, slide back into how things were."

In Doc Rivers' eyes, Thybulle was good during his return. As the Sixers head coach acknowledged that his Saturday night minutes were there to allow him to get re-integrated with the team, the focus for Thybulle was making sure he was back in full swing in terms of being in game shape, moving forward.

"It came back quickly," Thybulle explained. "For having two weeks without playing basketball, I felt pretty good to get out there and play decent minutes and to have the matchups I have. [It] was a tough assignment, but yeah."

Thybulle finished his return game with nine points on 3-5 shooting. He also had one offensive rebound along with a steal and a block. The third-year guard couldn't help his team top the Blazers, but his ability to get back out on the court and perform for around his average playing time was a positive sign for the Sixers.

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