The Philadelphia 76ers have been fined $50,000 for violating the NBA’s injury reporting rules, the league announced Saturday. The fine was issued in regards to the return of Joel Embiid, whose status the NBA claims Philadelphia failed to disclose in an accurate and timely manner leading up to the game. Philadelphia won that game, 99-79 and came within one game of tying their second-round series with the Heat thanks in large part to Embiid’s return.
Embiid missed the first two games of the series while recovering from a concussion and a fractured orbital bone. Embiid was initially listed as “out” for most of the buildup to Game 3, eventually being upgraded to doubtful. He warmed up before the game and the team ultimately decided that he could play. Embiid scored 18 points in the win.
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The Phoenix Suns were recently fined for a similar violation. Their star guard, Devin Booker, suffered a hamstring strain in the first round and missed several games. Like Embiid, he was initially listed as out before returning for Game 6 of their series against the New Orleans Pelicans. The Suns won that game and advanced to the second round.
With multiple fines for such violations coming in short succession, it appears as though league rules are not acting as much of a deterrent. Thus far in these playoffs, teams have been willing to pay a bit of cash in the name of allowing their players to recover and return on schedules that suit them without having to worry about injury report designations.