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Will Sixers Veteran Remain Available for Game 4 vs. Knicks?



Will Sixers Veteran Remain Available for Game 4 vs. Knicks?

The Philadelphia 76ers were fortunate to get a key reinforcement back this week.

Heading into Game 3 against the New York Knicks, the Sixers anticipated potentially having De’Anthony Melton return to the lineup. After practicing on Wednesday, Melton was upgraded to questionable on the injury report.

Shortly before the Sixers and the Knicks tipped off for Game 3, Melton was cleared for action. It was the first game since April 12 he was available.

Throughout the second half of the 2023-2024 regular season, Melton battled a back injury. Since January, he appeared in just five regular season games. When he took the court for the April 12 matchup against the Orlando Magic, Melton collected five minutes of playing time in his second game back.

Ahead of the Sixers’ regular-season finale against the Brooklyn Nets, Melton was ruled out. The Sixers held out Melton for their NBA Play-In Tournament game as well. And during the first two matchups of the first-round series against the New York Knicks, Melton was inactive.

76ers head coach Nick Nurse mentioned before the series tipped off that Melton still had a chance to suit up and potentially play. Nurse’s assumption was half-correct so far. Melton suited up on Thursday, but he didn’t play.

According to the head coach, the Sixers went in with the idea of playing Melton, but the spark they received from Cam Payne led the team in a different direction. After collecting a DNP, Melton remains available for Philly, as he’s been exlcuded from the injury report.

Even though Melton is cleared for action again, it’s unclear if he’ll play. Considering he hasn’t had a steady role since December, he hasn’t had a chance to compete much alongside the new-look lineup since the trade deadline. Plus, it’s unclear where he’s at physically after missing so much time.

The Sixers will tip off with the Knicks at 1 PM ET.

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