The Philadelphia 76ers just took a big hit. According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, James Harden came down with a right foot tendon sprain in the team’s loss to the Washington Wizards on Wednesday. He was seen leaving the game during the second half because of it but later returned to the court to finish the game with 24 points and 10 assists.The Sixers are now left to look elsewhere for more offensive production, and there’s no replacing the Beard. As the team’s primary playmaker, he put up solid numbers of 22.0 points, 10.0 assists, and 7.0 rebounds per contest.
Joel Embiid will likely take on most of the load with Harden out, although he is still dealing with an illness. Last season, before Ben Simmons was traded, Embiid was putting up MVP numbers and kept the Sixers as contenders in the East before acquiring Harden.
The young and emerging Tyrese Maxey is also a player that will have a more significant role in the absence of Harden, particularly in the playmaking department. He’s averaging a career-best 24.2 points on 51.6 percent shooting. There’s no question he will take care of the playmaking responsibilities for now because he did just that last year when the Sixers still had Simmons.
If one thing is for sure, these next few games are really going to show what this team is made of.
Philadelphia is currently the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference with a record of 4-5. Their next game will be against the New York Knicks on Friday.