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76ers C Embiid to play in Game 4 despite right thumb injury

Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid will start Game 4 of his team’s first round playoff series Saturday despite a right thumb injury that forced him to practice with a brace Friday.

Sixers coach Doc Rivers said Embiid is expected to undergo an MRI. The team has “concern” about Embiid’s injury, Rivers said, but don’t believe it can get worse by playing.

“I think we already know what it is, to be honest, but we’ve just got to make sure,” Rivers said. “We feel like it’s not a great injury, and I’m just going to leave it at that.”

Toronto Raptors forward OG Anunoby (3) walks away as Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (21) celebrates the 76ers' overtime win with forward Tobias Harris (12) in Game 3 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Wednesday, April 20, 2022, in Toronto. (Nathan DenetteThe Canadian Press via AP)

Embiid hit a 3-pointer with 0.8 seconds left in overtime Wednesday as Philadelphia beat Toronto 104-101 in Game 3. The 76ers lead the series 3-0 and can become the first team to advance to the second round with a win Saturday.

Embiid was not listed on the NBA injury report for Game 4.

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Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (21) celebrates after making a tie-breaking 3-pointer, next to Toronto Raptors guard Fred VanVleet (23) during overtime in Game 3 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Wednesday, April 20, 2022, in Toronto. (Chris YoungThe Canadian Press via AP)

Philadelphia 76ers guard James Harden (1) fouls Toronto Raptors forward Precious Achiuwa (5) as 76ers center Joel Embiid (21) defends during the second half of Game 3 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Wednesday, April 20, 2022, in Toronto. (Chris YoungThe Canadian Press via AP)

Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (21) celebrates with teammates Tobias Harris and Danny Green (14) after making a tie-breaking 3-pointer against the Toronto Raptors during overtime in Game 3 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Wednesday, April 20, 2022, in Toronto. (Chris YoungThe Canadian Press via AP)