Philadelphia 76ers Center Joel Embiid On Track for Game 2

The NBA's newly crowned MVP is ready to make his triumphant return. According to the Athletic's Shams Charania, Joel Embiid has declared himself ready to go for Wednesday night's Game 2 second-round matchup with the Boston Celtics.

Embiid was diagnosed with an LCL sprain following the 76ers' Game 3 102-97 win over the Brooklyn Nets in the first round. He missed Game 4, which the 76ers won 96-88 to complete the series sweep. He was also absent for the 76ers' opening Eastern Conference semi-finals matchup against the Boston Celtics; the 76ers pulled a shocking 119-115 upset on the road thanks to a career performance from James Harden.

Despite the sweep, the opening round was a series to forget for Embiid: the six-time All-Star averaged 20.0 points and 11.3 rebounds per game with a mediocre .462 field goal percentage. Unfortunately, that's become a bit of a pattern: since the beginning of the 2017-18 season, he has averaged 27.8 points and 11.5 rebounds per game with a .503 field goal percentage in the regular season compared to 23.8 points and 11.1 rebounds per game with a .467 field goal percentage in the postseason. The 76ers have yet to make it past the conference semi-finals since drafting Embiid in 2014.

Still, thanks to Harden's classic on Monday night, the 76ers are in a prime position to exorcise their demons. Embiid was deadly against the Celtics this season, averaging 36.8 points, 11.8 rebounds, and 4.3 assists per game with an excellent .695 true shooting percentage over four matchups. If his health allows him to maintain that efficacy, the 76ers will have a great chance to advance to the conference finals.

The 76ers and Celtics tip off tonight at 8:00 PM ET.

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