San Antonio Spurs vs Philadelphia 76ers

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Sunday NBA action tips off this evening from Philadelphia as the San Antonio Spurs battle with the 76ers from the Wells Fargo Center with coverage on NBA TV. The Spurs are four games above .500 while Philadelphia is looking to extend their recent winning streak to five games.

San Antonio has 19 wins and 15 losses so far and Philly has an overall record of 26 wins and 12 losses. The 76ers are the home favorite (-4) over the Spurs and the game total is hovering at 223 points, or 222.5 points. According William Hill Sports Book 54% of the money is on Philly at (-4). This is the first game between these two cities this season.

Spurs Destroy Magic 104-77 Friday Night

The San Antonio Spurs have a remarkable record of (19-15) so far this season, and considering the amount roster COVID-19 protocols they’ve experienced with the amount of different starting lineups they have had to use, Coach Popovich might be up for Coach of the Year if he can sneak the Spurs into the post season.

The Spurs played its first home game Friday night with fans and welcomed back a handful of players who sat almost a month due to COVID-19 protocols. San Antonio was able to hold the Magic to less then 80 points which the Spurs hadn’t done to an opponent since 2018. Rudy Gay had 19 points against the Magic on Friday while Dejounte Murray and Derrick White each had 17 points.

Gay and White, along with Keldon Johnson and Devin Vassell all missed extensive time after all were forced to sit out due to COVID-19 health and safety protocols. Their return has been vital as DeMar DeRozan may miss tonights game due to attending his fathers funeral over the weekend. And with LaMarcus Aldridge agreeing to part ways with San Antonio due to a lesser role, the Spurs literally needed everyone in order to beat the Magic 104-77.

76ers Embiid MRI Comes Back Negative

The city of Philadelphia and their basketball fans have legitimate championship aspirations this season. MVP candidate Joel Embiid is averaging 30.2 points per game and 11.6 rebounds. They believe they have the right coach now and all the right pieces to make a serious run at the title. The 76ers lead Brooklyn by only a half game in the Eastern Conference standings and everything seems to be falling into place for Philadelphia. But then for Philly there was as big of a scare as they could have had Friday night in Washington DC.

But Joel Embiid and the city of the Philadelphia are breathing a collective sigh of relief after learning there is no structural damage to his left knee. The 76ers learned that Embiid’s MRI came back negative and there is no damage to his ACL and meniscus after going down halfway through the third quarter of Fridays game against Washington. Embiid’s left knee might not be the only thing still intact as some experts believe his MVP candidacy may still may be in good standing if he is only going to miss 1-2 weeks with a bruised knee.

Tobias Harris will have to step it up with Simmons potentially out again, and no Embiid tonight. He is the Sixers second leading scorer with 20.2 points per game. Harris is also averaging 7.5 boards per game where the Sixers will need him on the glass with Embiid out. But this is also why the Sixers convinced Dwight Howard to leave LA and come to Philly. Since the All-Star break Howard scored 6 points against the Wizards, and 18 in the previous game against the Bulls. Howard is averaging 7.5 rebounds in a little over 16 minutes per game.

The Bottom Line
What to bet on this game.

Full-Game Side Bet
Rating:

The Philadelphia 76ers have one of the best home records in the NBA with 16 wins and only 3 losses. The 76ers are also (7-3) against the spread over their last ten games while the Spurs are (5-5). The 76ers outscore their opponents by 12 points per 100 possessions when Embiid is on the court. But they are outscored by more than 4 points when he is off the court, and that is the largest differential in the NBA. It’s unclear whether Simmons will return for tonights game as he missed the previous two due to contact tracing. It is also unclear whether DeRozan will play today for the Spurs. I think the Spurs can crank up the defensive pressure again like they did against the Magic on Friday night and steal one from the home team. Take the San Antonio Spurs to cover the four points on the road tonight, and maybe win the contest outright against a short handed Philly team.

Prediction:
San Antonio Spurs +4

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Full-Game Total Pick
Rating:

Both of these teams are missing starters, but the NBA doesn’t typically have a shortage on raw scorers even if they are coming off the bench. Philadelphia and San Antonio give up 110 points per game on the defensive side while Philly scores an average of 115 points per game to San Antonio’s 110 points per game. During Philly’s recent four game win streak they have averaged 128 points per tilt. I expect that to be lower in this game since they will be potentially missing Simmons and Embiid. Additionally, the Spurs are averaging 3.5 points less than their normal game average over their last four games and may be without DeRozan for a second straight game. I like the under in this matchup tonight as both teams will rely on their defense as both are experiencing a shortage of starters and scorers.

Prediction:
Under 222.5