NBA: Sixers' Embiid returns from injury wearing No. 24

Field Level Media/Reuters

Posted at Jan 29 2020 09:51 AM

Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid wearing Kobe Bryants number 24 shoots past Golden State Warriors forward Marquese Chriss (32) during the first quarter at Wells Fargo Center. Bill Streicher, USA TODAY Sports/Reuters.

Philadelphia 76ers star center Joel Embiid returned from a nine-game absence due to a torn ligament in his left ring finger to play against the Golden State Warriors on Tuesday night.

Embiid suffered the injury on Jan. 6 during a game against the Oklahoma City Thunder. He underwent surgery on Jan. 10.

Embiid also wasn't wearing his usual No. 21 as the team said the 25-year-old gained NBA approval to wear No. 24, one of the numbers worn by Philadelphia native Kobe Bryant, who was killed in a helicopter crash in the Los Angeles area on Sunday.

The 76ers previously retired No. 24 for Hall of Famer Bobby Jones. According to multiple reports, Embiid called up Jones earlier Tuesday to ask if he could wear the number and Jones granted permission.

Embiid entered the contest with averages of 23.4 points and 12.3 rebounds in 31 games this season.

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