When Foot Surgery Costs $9 Million

Embiid's second foot surgery will cost Philly a pretty pennyBy now, pretty much everyone knows that Joel Embiid will undergo a second foot surgery on his twice-broken right foot, meaning the Philadelphia 76ers’ top draft pick will not see one second of play time in his first OR second season in the NBA.

As if that news weren’t bad enough for Philly fans, wait until they hear this: Even though the NBA offers contract insurance to teams for situations just like this one,  the 76ers won’t see a penny of that money. Why? They knew about Embiid’s injury before drafting him (the star’s fracture was discovered just days before the draft, eliminating his chance of becoming the over-all number one pick) so his right foot is excluded from the insurance.

That means Philly will have paid Embiid $9 million to sit on their bench for two full years. Were the injured foot not excluded from their insurance policy, they could expect to collect about 60% of his contract value ($5.4M) that would at least help soften the blow.

Gambling on foot fractures is a risky business, especially with pro-athletes who put so much strain on already-damaged bones in their attempts to make a comeback on the court. Whether or not the 76ers will ever get a performance out of Embiid remains to be seen but, right now, this Houston podiatrist is not feeling too hopeful for the young player.
Dr. Andrew Schneider
Dr. Andrew Schneider is a podiatrist and foot surgeon at Tanglewood Foot Specialists in Houston, TX.