The $9 million the Philadelphia 76ers ownership will pay Joel Embiid in his first two years, even though he has not played an NBA game, will come out of their pockets.
Although Embiid's contract is insured, since it is among the five highest salaries on the team, sources say Embiid's right foot was excluded from the policy because it was a pre-existing injury. Embiid first had surgery on the foot the week before the 2014 NBA draft, in which he was taken by the 76ers with the third pick.
If Embiid's foot were insured, the 76ers would have received roughly 60 percent, or $5.4 million back, from the league's insurance policy.
On Saturday, Yahoo Sports reported that Embiid will have a second surgery on his right foot this week. The team announced on July 11 that Embiid would miss his second straight season due to the setback.
One policy that didn't exclude Embiid's right foot was a permanent total disability policy the center signed in November 2013 while at the University of Kansas. A source familiar with the policy said Embiid first could collect a tax-free $5 million if he calls it quits three years after signing the policy -- November 2016 -- and can always collect as long as he doesn't play 20 NBA games.
Embiid's first two years were guaranteed. The next two years after this season are team options that still fall under the rookie wage scale.