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Joel Embiid scores 30 points in return to lineup vs. Pistons [UPDATE]

All-Star center has been sidelined since Feb. 26 due to sprained left shoulder. We break down his fantasy basketball performance

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Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid prepares to throw the ceremonial game ball to fans after a victory against the Atlanta Hawks at Wells Fargo Center. Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

UPDATE: 76ers vs. Pistons Recap — Embiid’s ($10,400) first game back from his shoulder injury couldn’t have gone much smoother. Philly cruised past the Pistons, winning by a final score of 124-106. Embiid only played 26 minutes in his first game back, but still did some damage. He finished with 30 points, 14 rebounds and 54.5 DKFP. Expect Embiid to play more minutes going forward.

UPDATE: March 11, 5:19 p.m. — Embiid is available to play vs. the Pistons. The All-Star center has missed the past five games due to a shoulder injury. The Sixers have tanked on defense with both Embiid and Ben Simmons sidelined.

Right now, we don’t know how much Embiid will play. If he’s going to be restricted, he’ll be tough to trust in DFS. The appealing part is he’ll be lower owned and has a decent ceiling given how poorly the Pistons are at defending the paint. With Embiid back, we’re expected to see a front court with Embiid and Al Horford both starting again. Horford gets a downgrade in fantasy and Shake Milton and Tobias Harris should see less offensive opportunities.

As for the lines on DraftKings Sportsbook, the Sixers are 12.5 points favorites at home. This is a wide spread, even for a great home team like Philly going up against a weaker opponent. Detroit has a chance to cover in this one, but I’d maybe wait and bet the live lines, just to see how the Sixers and Embiid look.

UPDATE: March 10, 5:36 p.m. — Embiid is being listed as questionable to play in Wednesday’s game vs. the Pistons.

Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid is hopeful to return to the lineup next Wednesday vs. the Detroit Pistons, The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported Friday afternoon. Embiid has been sidelined since the end of February due to a sprained left shoulder. The Sixers have also been without All-Star Ben Simmons, who is dealing with a bad back. With both out of the lineup, the Sixers have been able to stay afloat, but obviously getting one or both back ASAP would be ideal.

The Sixers have taken a bigger hit defensively than offensively with both Simmons and Embiid out. There’s really only Al Horford to patrol the paint and Philly’s allowing a ton of points in that area the past five games. Embiid’s return would be a big boost for the entire lineup. Maybe it’s a slight downgrade for Tobias Harris and Horford, but really it takes attention off both of them. With Simmons and Josh Richardson both out, there’s still a lot of shots and usage to go around.