The Philadelphia 76ers playoff hopes took a major hit when Robert Covington went down with a knee injury in the final preseason game against the Boston Celtics. Covington hurt himself with a bad landing on a missed layup in the fourth quarter with the Sixers down 85-71.
Yahoo Sports Cham Charania reported, via Twitter, “Philadelphia’s Robert Covington has been diagnosed with sprained right MCL and bone bruise in knee, source tells Yahoo. Expected out 2 weeks”
Covington’s loss will assuredly be felt, as Shamus Clancey of Liberty Ballers writes:
Despite Nerlens Noel’s second-half surge into a defensive monster, Covington was likely the team’s best all-around player last year, knocking down 37.4% of his triples on 446 attempts while playing solid defense across multiple positions. On a team expected to be centered around Noel and Jahlil Okafor sharing the floor and clogging the paint this season, floor spacing is at a premium for this team.
Covington scored 13.5 points per game and 4.5 boards with 1.5 assists and was a solid player for the 76ers, who, with or without Covington really have no prayer of making the playoffs. But Covington is one of a handful of players the team has that would be on most NBA rosters.
And it’s not like his season is over. He’ll just miss two weeks, and hopefully will be fine after that. That said, one wonders why late in a blowout of a meaningless game, one of the few quality players the Sixers have was still in the game. Has the tanking already started?