Joel Embiid and the Philadelphia 76ers have teamed up to donate $1.3million to Penn Medicine for critical support of healthcare workers fighting coronavirus.

COVID-19 has wreaked havoc globally, with more than one million confirmed cases and over 58,800 deaths.

Sport has also been brought to a standstill amid the coronavirus pandemic – the NBA among the leagues on hiatus around the world.

76ers All-Star Embiid, along with managing partner Josh Harris and co-managing partner David Blitzer made a significant contribution to the funding campaign for COVID-19 antibody testing of frontline healthcare workers, identifying those with potential immunity.

"During this pandemic, many doctors and nurses are working like soldiers on the front lines of a war and they need to be provided with as much armour as possible in this battle," Embiid said.

"COVID-19 antibody testing can help Philadelphia health care workers at this critical time, and we need to do everything possible to help those heroes who are putting their lives at risk to help us."

Harris added: "The only way for us to get through this terrible global crisis is to ensure a safe work environment for health care professionals and ultimately find a treatment for COVID-19. We are very proud to partner with the incredible team at Penn Medicine, who are tirelessly working towards this by identifying immunity in our brave doctors and nurses.

"Joel has been a leader in highlighting the urgent need for this kind of testing—David and I thank him for his leadership in this area and are excited to join forces with him. Our medical workers are on the frontlines of this crisis, have been hit hardest by it and need all the help and support we can give them. We have rough days ahead, but with collective action like this, together we will make it through."

University of Pennsylvania president Amy Gutmann said: "We are enormously grateful to Joel Embiid, Josh Harris, and David Blitzer for stepping up in a time of great need with forward-thinking philanthropy—helping us to understand COVID-19 through the lens of precision medicine.

"We will take this new and powerful knowledge about how our bodies react to the virus and use it to protect our healthcare heroes, sharing these lessons with the City of Philadelphia and across the world."

Philadelphia 76ers All-Star Joel Embiid made his injury comeback against the Detroit Pistons, the NBA franchise announced.

Embiid had been sidelined with a shoulder problem since February 26, however, the 76ers center returned to the court for Wednesday's clash.

The three-time All-Star avoided structural damage after colliding with Ante Zizic in Philadelphia's 108-94 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers last month.

Embiid is averaging 23.3 points, 11.8 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game for the 76ers this season.

The 76ers (38-26) are sixth in the Eastern Conference as they continue to struggle on the road, with a 10-24 record.

Philadelphia 76ers head coach Brett Brown is convinced All-Star duo Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons will win an NBA championship together.

76ers center Embiid and guard Simmons have been the subjects of endless questions about their chemistry, with repeated claims that the pair cannot play together for Philadelphia due to contrasting styles.

Reports have also claimed the 76ers could deal one of the players in pursuit of a title, with big man Embiid apparently seen as the most likely to be moved on should Philadelphia explore a trade.

But Brown believes Embiid and Simmons can lead the 76ers – who have not won the NBA since 1983 – to glory.

"I personally am convinced those two are going to win a championship at some point in their career and that they, for sure, can coexist," Brown told reporters on Monday.

"The myth is that they can't. I think that is so abused and not articulated the way I see it."

Brown, speaking ahead of Tuesday's clash against the Los Angeles Lakers, added: "We played an exciting style and they coexisted just fine.

"It always goes down to surrounding cast and style of play and willingness to coexist and the acknowledgement they need each other. They need each other."

"Do your homework and look at pairings that have won and when they win. You aren't going to see many that are 23 and 26," he continued. "Sometimes it takes a little bit of time.

"These guys are actually in a position where they can do some really special things. How do we surround them with the resources to be able to do that?"

Embiid is averaging 23.3 points, 11.8 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game for the 76ers this season, while Simmons is averaging 16.7 points, 8.2 assists and 7.8 rebounds.

The 76ers are sixth in the Eastern Conference with a 37-24 record, behind the NBA-leading Milwaukee Bucks (52-9), Toronto Raptors (42-18), Boston Celtics (41-18), Miami Heat (39-22) and Indiana Pacers (37-24).

Brett Brown provided a positive update on Joel Embiid's shoulder injury, confirming the Philadelphia 76ers center has sustained "no structural damage".

Embiid left the 76ers' 108-94 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday following a collision with Ante Zizic in the first quarter and did not return.

Philadelphia consequently faced the New York Knicks on Thursday without All-Star duo Embiid and Ben Simmons, who is reportedly set to miss two weeks with a back problem.

The Sixers ran out 115-106 winners at Wells Fargo Center, Tobias Harris stepping up with 34 points on 14-of-21 shooting, and there was more good news for Brown after the game.

"The fact that there is no structural damage, we all hear loudly," said coach Brown, with Embiid to be re-evaluated in a week.

"It's as much from the personal standpoint as it is a selfish coach that he's looking forward to this run home, this final third, the responsibility, no Ben for how long we'll all figure out in time.

"To learn that from his perspective and from the team's perspective, that is exciting news."

Joel Embiid sat out the Philadelphia 76ers' game against the New York Knicks due to a shoulder problem.

Embiid did not suit up for Thursday's clash with the Knicks after hurting his shoulder in Wednesday's loss at the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The NBA All-Star reportedly suffered a sprained left shoulder, with the 76ers still evaluating Embiid and hoping to provide another update on Friday.

Embiid is averaging 23.3 points, 11.8 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game for the 76ers (36-23), who are fifth in the Eastern Conference.

The 76ers are already without fellow All-Star Ben Simmons due to a back problem.

Joel Embiid will undergo a scan on his injured shoulder and is a doubt for the Philadelphia 76ers' clash with the New York Knicks on Thursday.

The All-Star center managed just eight minutes of Wednesday's 108-94 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Embiid appeared to suffer the setback in a coming together with Cavaliers center Ante Zizic, missing two free throws shortly after, and coach Brett Brown was left in doubt over his fitness.

"I'm really sort of a prisoner to the medical people's information," Brown said, per ESPN. "I haven't checked in. I just left the team. I'm unsure, I really am unsure."

The 76ers are 9-21 on the road after their latest loss at Wells Fargo Center, in stark contrast to a home record that is the best in the league.

Brown also had to contend with the absence of Ben Simmons, out with a back injury, but felt it was a chance for someone else to step up against a struggling Cavs side.

"I feel like when you don't have Joel and you don't have Ben, it's an opportunity for others to put their hand up and declare this is who we are. It is who we are," Brown said. "I felt from that physical standpoint we were C-minus."

Embiid is averaging 23.3 points this season and peaked in Monday's win over the Atlanta Hawks, draining a career-high 49 points.

Joel Embiid has been fined $25,000 by the NBA for making an obscene gesture on court and using profane language during a television interview.

The Philadelphia 76ers center reacted to Kevin Huerter stealing the ball from him in the final seconds of his team's 129-112 victory over the Atlanta Hawks on Monday by raising his middle finger.

Embiid had a career-high 49 points but opted not to go for a half-century in the closing stages, instead dribbling the ball out to run out the clock.

However, when Huerter claimed possession, the 25-year-old responded with a one-finger salute towards his opponent which was picked up by courtside cameras.

Embiid was then asked after the game in an interview if he is the best player in the world, a question stemming from him making such a claim after a recent win over the Brooklyn Nets.

Opting to stand by his previous comment, he referenced the recent All-Star Game in Chicago – having scored 22 points for Team Giannis - and included the use of an expletive, though he quickly said sorry for his choice of words, as well as issuing an on-air apology for his reaction to Huerter.

In a statement, Kiki VanDeWeghe, executive vice-president of basketball operations for the NBA announced Embiid's punishment, with the amount reflective of his "multiple prior violations of acceptable on-court decorum".

The 76ers are in action on Wednesday, hosting the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Joel Embiid has apologised for his middle finger gesture at Kevin Huerter and vowed to prove to his critics that he is the best player in the world.

The 25-year-old delivered a career-high 49 points, to go with 14 rebounds, as the Philadelphia 76ers eased to a 129-112 victory over Atlanta Hawks on Monday.

He had a chance to reach 50 in the final 30 seconds, but with the Sixers 17 points ahead Embiid instead appeared ready to run down the clock.

Huerter stole the ball off Embiid as he passed half court, however, prompting a one-finger salute that was picked up by the courtside cameras. 

Explaining his actions after the game, Embiid told NBC Sports Philadelphia: "I want to say sorry for what I did at the end. Y'all probably saw that on TV. I'm sorry."

But when questioned on the same topic at a news conference, Embiid backtracked slightly by adding: "There's always this thing about you shouldn't shoot the ball if you're up 20.

"I feel like it should go both ways too. I mean, I'm running the clock down and I feel like the game is over, that's why I'm doing it.

"But to me, if the other team is going to keep playing defense and they're going to keep shooting the ball at the other end, I feel like we should just be like, 'Well, be better next time,' and just go out and score. 

"I thought about it when I had the ball again, but I was like 'Eh, I'm going to stay cool.'"

Embiid has produced three big performances in a row for the Sixers, either side of a 22-point display in the NBA All-Star Game.

And after labelling himself among the league's elite performers following Philadelphia's overtime victory against the Brooklyn Nets on Thursday, Embiid admitted it is down to him to prove his claim.

"What I said was that All-Star Game fourth quarter, I'm out there with some of the guys that are considered the best players in the world, and I'm out there just dominating, being unstoppable, doing whatever I want, especially in the post," he said.

"So to me, I just felt like that was a chance for me to prove that I deserved being in that conversation of being the best player in the world.

"That's what I said. But like I said tonight, if I play like that every night, like this, like I played tonight, what more can you say? I just gotta keep on doing it; I know I'm not, but I do believe it, because I got to prove it, I got to win. 

"My goal is to win a championship - that's how you prove you're up there. I'm going to do everything I can to get to that point and win a championship."

Philadelphia 76ers star Joel Embiid said he loves playing alongside team-mate Ben Simmons and believes the pair can "accomplish something special" with the franchise.

Embiid and guard Simmons have been the subjects of endless questions about their chemistry, with repeated claims that the All-Star duo cannot play together for the 76ers due to contrasting styles.

There have also been reports the 76ers – fifth in the Eastern Conference as they eye a championship – could deal one of their stars at the end of the season, with Embiid more likely to be moved on should Philadelphia explore a trade, according to ESPN.

Quizzed on what everyone is asking him, 76ers center Embiid rolled his eyes as he told ESPN: "'Can they play together, do they had each other?'

"I mean, at the end of the day, we know what we go to do. I love playing with him. He is a special talent.

"He helps us a lot. We can accomplish something special."

Embiid, who posted a season-high 39 points and 16 rebounds against the Brooklyn Nets on Thursday, is averaging 23.3 points, 12.0 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game for the 76ers in 2019-20.

Simmons, meanwhile, is averaging 16.9 points, 8.3 assists and 7.9 rebounds.

Joel Embiid feels his current run of form, including a 22-point display in the NBA All-Star Game, has proven he is the best player in the world.

Big man Embiid is often maligned despite averaging 23.3 points and 12 rebounds per game this season, with his highly-talented Philadelphia 76ers an underwhelming fifth in the Eastern Conference.

But the 25-year-old has had a big hand in Sixers wins either side of the All-Star break.

Embiid tallied 26 points and nine rebounds as he starred alongside Ben Simmons in a defeat of the Los Angeles Clippers, while a brilliant 39-point, 16-rebound return lifted Philadelphia to an overtime victory over the Brooklyn Nets on Thursday, extending their winning run to four games.

In between those two performances, Embiid also managed 22 points and 10 rebounds for Team Giannis as he took on the best the Western Conference had to offer.

It was this display in the All-Star Game that Embiid felt secured his place as the league's elite performer.

"The All-Star game was fun, being there in the fourth quarter doing my thing at the end of the game," he said after seeing off the Nets, who will miss Kyrie Irving for the remainder of the season.

"The game against the Clippers was a good starting spot, but the All-Star game was just proving that I'm here, I belong, being the best player in the world.

"And I just intend to keep coming out every single night and playing hard, just going out and trying to win a championship."

Embiid will have the opportunity to back up his claim on Saturday when the Sixers take on conference leaders the Milwaukee Bucks and All-Star captain Giannis Antetokounmpo, who is on course for a second straight MVP award.

"We beat them pretty bad in the first matchup [121-109 in December], they got us the last one [112-101 earlier this month]," Embiid said. "So, it's on us to go out there and try to beat them again."

Team LeBron defeated Team Giannis 157-155 in the revamped NBA All-Star Game in Chicago on Sunday.

Unlike previous years, every quarter counted in the name of charity at the United Center, where the new format was unveiled for the showpiece event.

Each of the first three quarters started with the score at 0-0 and lasted the standard 12 minutes, with the game clock turned off for the final period and a final target score set.

The cumulative score of the first three quarters was 133-124 in favour of Team Giannis. The final target score was set by taking the leading team's cumulative score and adding 24 – the 24 representing Kobe Bryant's jersey number.

LeBron James and his team earned bragging rights in the 69th edition of the All-Star Game – hometown hero and Los Angeles Lakers star Anthony Davis (20 points) making one of two free throws to beat Giannis Antetokounmpo's side.

While Davis scored the winning point, Kawhi Leonard (30 points) received the All-Star Game Kobe Bryant MVP Award, renamed in honour of the five-time NBA champion.

Bryant, who tragically died in a helicopter crash along with his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven others last month, was honoured prior to tip-off.

Magic Johnson led an eight-second moment of silence for Lakers legend Bryant and former commissioner David Stern as both All-Star teams came together to hold hands, before delivering a heartfelt speech.

Team LeBron made a fast start, outscoring Team Giannis 53-41 in the first period before the latter won the second period 51-30.

Neither team could be split in the third, though Team Giannis went into the fourth quarter leading Team LeBron – who rallied to win for the third successive year.

James and Chris Paul finished with 23 points each, while Ben Simmons (17) and James Harden (11) were also in double-digits for Team LeBron.

Team Giannis were led by Antetokounmpo (25 points, 11 rebounds), Joel Embiid (22 points, 10 rebounds), Kemba Walker (23 points) and Rudy Gobert (21 points, 11 rebounds).

Joel Embiid expressed his love for the Philadelphia 76ers and their fans after being booed, shushing supporters and posting a cryptic social media post.

Amid criticism of NBA championship hopefuls the 76ers, Embiid was the target of boos in Sunday's 118-111 win over the Chicago Bulls in Philadelphia, where the All-Star responded by shushing the crowd following a three-pointer.

On Monday, Embiid sparked doubts over his future when he posted a photo of himself shushing 76ers fans, with the caption: "You either die a hero or live long enough to see yourself become the villain".

That drew a response from former 76ers team-mate and Miami Heat star Jimmy Butler, who said: "I know a place where villains are welcome".

Embiid replied, "Damn right my brother."

Shortly afterwards, Embiid then wrote: "Made for this… If I can take it then you can too. PHILA TOUGH!!! #AllLove".

Embiid addressed the backlash on Tuesday after helping the 76ers past the Los Angeles Clippers 110-103 at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia.

"They've been going at me, I went back at them," a smiling Embiid told reporters post-game. "We're all human beings, if I can take it, then everybody else can take it too.

"We move on, we learn from it, we move on. I've got to do a better job, they've got to do a better job. I understand where they come from, but then again, if you dish it, you've got to be able to take it back."

Drafted by the 76ers with the third pick in 2014, Embiid added: "It's all love. I love my city. I've been here for a long time now, we have a special relationship, and I’m happy to be here. I can't wait for the future, especially this year. I think we can accomplish something great."

"Tonight, I could've shushed them again, but it was all about having fun again. Just getting back to my myself, like I said last game, I'm back to doing whatever I want and say," continued Embiid, who posted 26 points and nine rebounds against the Clippers.

"That's how I used to be and I was dominating that way. This year, I made a decision to change and I guess it hasn't worked out so it comes with the good and bad. If it helps us win, then I'm going to be that guy."

Joel Embiid acknowledged he needs to "smile a little more" and readjust his mindset after the Philadelphia 76ers went down 112-101 to the Milwaukee Bucks.

The 76ers lost for a fourth straight NBA game on Thursday, all on the road, and Embiid endured a mixed display, scoring just four first-half points and ending with 19 from 6-of-26 shooting.

Embiid later said his troublesome left hand, which he had surgery on last month, was causing some issues but insists that was not the reason for his patchy showing.

"I'm trying to get back to the fun Joel, smile a little more," Embiid told reporters. 

"The whole season I told myself I was going to be serious. I felt like everyone looked at [me] in a way that I'm moody or I might not care. I do. I want to win. 

"But at the same time I try to have a different attitude. Obviously, it hasn't been working. Gotta go back to that fun Joel, fun personality. [But] still locked in. Try to help us any way I can."

Team-mate Al Horford said the 76ers are trying to "find ourselves" as they aim to come out of a rut.

"I think it puts a lot of things in perspective," he said. "And desperation. We've lost four in a row now. 

"It's like finding ourselves. Trying to figure it out. I think good is going to come out of this."

Anthony Davis and Kawhi Leonard headline Team LeBron, while Team Giannis includes Joel Embiid and Pascal Siakam for the NBA All-Star Game.

LeBron James and Giannis Antetokounmpo finalised their teams for the showcase event, which will take place at the United Center in Chicago on February 16.

James used the number one pick to draft Los Angeles Lakers team-mate Anthony Davis to Team LeBron, while reigning MVP Antetokounmpo countered by selecting Joel Embiid of the Philadelphia 76ers.

Team LeBron's starting five consists of James, Davis, Los Angeles Clippers superstar Kawhi Leonard, Dallas Mavericks sensation Luka Doncic and Houston Rockets star James Harden.

Antetokounmpo, Embiid, Toronto Raptors star Siakam, Boston Celtics guard Kemba Walker and the Atlanta Hawks' Trae Young are the starters for Team Giannis.

Team LeBron reigned supreme last year – James' squad winning 178-164 over Team Giannis in Charlotte.

 

Team LeBron

Starters: LeBron James (Los Angeles Lakers), Anthony Davis (Los Angeles Lakers), Kawhi Leonard (Los Angeles Clippers), Luka Doncic (Dallas Mavericks), James Harden (Houston Rockets)
Reserves: Damian Lillard (Portland Trail Blazers), Ben Simmons (Philadelphia 76ers), Nikola Jokic (Denver Nuggets), Jayson Tatum (Boston Celtics), Chris Paul (Oklahoma City Thunder), Russell Westbrook (Houston Rockets), Domantas Sabonis (Indiana Pacers)

Team Giannis

Starters: Giannis Antetokounmpo (Milwaukee Bucks), Joel Embiid (Philadelphia 76ers), Pascal Siakam (Toronto Raptors), Kemba Walker (Boston Celtics), Trae Young (Atlanta Hawks)
Reserves: Khris Middleton (Milwaukee Bucks), Bam Adebayo (Miami Heat), Rudy Gobert (Utah Jazz), Kyle Lowry (Toronto Raptors), Brandon Ingram (New Orleans Pelicans), Donovan Mitchell (Utah Jazz)

Philadelphia 76ers star Joel Embiid made his return from a finger injury and honoured the late Kobe Bryant on Tuesday.

Embiid missed nine games and required surgery after a nasty dislocated finger in a win over the Oklahoma City Thunder earlier this month.

But the 76ers star returned for a clash against the Golden State Warriors at Wells Fargo Center and he wore number 24, made famous by Bryant during his glittering career with the Los Angeles Lakers.

Bryant died in a helicopter crash alongside his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven others on Sunday.

The 76ers held a moment of silence before ringing the bell nine times to recognise all nine victims.

The teams then started the game by taking an eight-second backcourt violation and 24-second shot-clock violation in a tribute to Bryant, who wore the two numbers during his career.

Embiid was averaging 23.4 points, 12.3 rebounds and 3.3 assists this season heading into the meeting with the Warriors.

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