Okafor will miss his second straight game today with soreness in the knee, and the team isn’t sure when he might be able to return. He said the Sixers are being “super cautious” about letting him back on the court.
“If we were like on the verge of trying to get a playoff spot or something like that, I could go out there and play,” Okafor said Friday. “But coach [Brett] Brown and all of our people behind the scenes don’t believe it’s necessary for me to play if my knee is feeling sore and stuff like that. It’s pretty much how they’ve been since I’ve been a Sixer.”
Brown said he will continue to determine Okafor’s status based on reports from team doctors.
Soreness has been a problem for Okafor since a surgical procedure March 22, 2016, to fix a torn meniscus in the knee. The pain flared up in a game last Sunday, and he wasn’t used after halftime. He played Wednesday against Oklahoma City, but was hit in the knee and was held out of Friday’s game.
Okafor appeared in just 53 games last year before surgery. He is at 50 this season and his averages in scoring, rebounding and minutes played have all dropped sharply from a year ago.
One option for Philadelphia is to shut down Okafor for the rest of the season. At 27-45, the Sixers are far out of the playoff race and are tied for sixth in our latest Reverse Standings.