Embiid welcomes chance to play more, starting Friday

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Joel Embiid says he is looking forward getting increased minutes.

Joel Embiid is slated to be on the court more Friday when the 76ers play the Orlando Magic at the Wells Fargo Center. The team has raised the number of minutes the rookie center can play from 24 to 28.

After missing his first two seasons following foot surgeries, Embiid is still not playing in back-to-back games. He last played Sunday in a 112-108 loss to visiting Cleveland.

Based on the team's policy, Embiid won't play Saturday in a home game against the Boston Celtics.

As for his increased playing time, Embiid, who is averaging 18.2 points and 7.8 rebounds in 22.8 minutes, had a natural reaction.

"I have been kind of pushing them to get me more minutes and I was happy," said Embiid, who was named the NBA's Eastern Conference rookie of the month.

Simmons at the point

Sixers coach Brett Brown expanded on his comments from Wednesday, when he said Ben Simmons would play point guard upon his return from injury. Simmons had surgery after breaking his right foot on the final day of training camp in September. He originally was ticketed to play point forward.

 The first overall NBA draft choice out of LSU, Simmons is expected to return in January.

Not only will Simmons play the point on offense, he will defend opposing point guards. Brown is confident that the 6-foot-10 Simmons can hold his own defensively.

"I intend on making him what we know as a legitimate point guard and we are going to try him defending other point guards," Brown said after practice.

Bayless questionable

Point guard Jerryd Bayless did not go through the live portion of practice and was listed as questionable.

He is sidelined with a sore left wrist and missed the last two games. Bayless has played in only three games this season as he recovers from a torn ligament.

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