The matchup between Joel Embiid and Rudy Gobert will have to wait.
In the Sixers’ last game against Utah earlier this month, Embiid did not play. This time around, Gobert is sidelined with a bruised right tibia.
Utah’s Derrick Favors is preparing to take on Embiid, if the Sixers star center plays. Embiid was listed as questionable Monday morning because of soreness in his surgically repaired left knee.
#Sixers' @JoelEmbiid on who makes the decision if he plays or not: "The decision is on me. I'm just going to go out there in warmups, see how I feel, see how my body feels. If I feel good, I'm playing. It's not on them [Sixers]. It's more on me."
— Keith Pompey (@PompeyOnSixers) November 20, 2017
“I’ve got to come out and be ready for [Embiid],” Favors said. “He’s a good offensive player and can do a lot of things.”
Even if Embiid doesn’t play, Jazz coach Quin Snyder knows the Sixers have plenty of firepower. In the previous meeting, the Sixers beat the Jazz, 104-97, behind a season-high 25 points from Dario Saric.
“They played small with Saric at the five a fair amount, and he had five threes. Embiid can hit five threes, too,” Snyder said. “So we get a different look tonight and it’s an equally daunting task, particularly on the road.”
It isn’t just the deep-shooting front court that concerns the Jazz. Snyder is also paying close attention to Ben Simmons and putting a heavy emphasis on slowing the offense Simmons creates in transition.
“He forces you into situations you aren’t comfortable in and creates breakdowns. When you have breakdowns against these guys, then you have JJ [Redick] out there knocking shots down and [Robert] Covington and Saric,” Snyder said. “There’s just so many weapons in the open court that it can be really difficult to defend them.”
Thabo Sefolosha, who did not play Friday against Brooklyn because of knee soreness but played Saturday against Orlando, will play against the Sixers. Jonas Jerebko, who is under the weather, will play. Dante Exum (left shoulder surgery), Joe Johnson (right wrist), and Gobert are out.