Sixers Kelly Oubre Jr. aims to return next week

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Sixers
Philadelphia 76ers’ Kelly Oubre Jr. dunks during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Toronto Raptors, Thursday, Nov. 2, 2023, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

Philadelphia 76ers forward Kelly Oubre Jr., who suffered a fractured rib on November 11th, is aiming to return to play next week – possibly as soon as Wednesday. The Athletic’s Shams Charania was the first to report the news.

Oubre has been sidelined from action for the last three weeks after it was reported he was struck by a motor vehicle in Center City. He was originally projected to miss “significant time,” per Adrian Wojnarowski, with many speculating that that timeframe meant he’d be out until 2024. Fortunately, the 27-year-old seems to be doing better than initially thought and even participated in a shootaround before the Sixers’ victory over the Los Angeles Lakers.

Great news for the Sixers

Sixers
Philadelphia 76ers’ Kelly Oubre Jr. (9) goes up for a shot during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Toronto Raptors, Thursday, Nov. 2, 2023, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

The shortened recovery time is a welcome gift to the team. The Sixers went 7-1 in a red-hot start prior to Oubre’s injury, yet have been just 5-5 since. The addition of Oubre this season has provided some much-needed wing reinforcement, and in his first season in Philadelphia, the forward has been averaging 16.3 points and 5.1 rebounds per game. He’s also been shooting 50% from the field and an excellent 37.8% from three. After the Sixers were substantially outscored by the New Orleans Pelicans last night, Oubre’s return couldn’t come at a better time.

The Sixers take on the Washington Wizards on the road next Wednesday, which could be Oubre’s first game back. If not, he’ll likely look to return next Friday as the team hosts the Atlanta Hawks in South Philadelphia.