Nets vs. 76ers Odds
|Time||7:30 p.m. ET|
|Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.|
Benjamin Simmons makes his long-awaited return to the City of Brotherly Love, but instead of a showdown with Joel Embiid, it looks as if this will be an uneven matchup due to a myriad of Philadelphia injuries.
Brooklyn clearly has the edge tonight, but can the 76ers keep it close?
Nets Putting the Pieces Together
The Nets are relatively healthy at the moment and should start their preferred lineup with Nicolas Claxton off of the injury report after a one-game absence. This may move Simmons back to the sixth-man role, but he has improved dramatically over the past week.
The Nets found something when Kyrie Irving was out, and they have continued that upon his return. Over the last two weeks, the Nets are 4-2 with a +3.7 Point Differential. Their offense has played about the same all season, but their defense is roughly 3.0 points better per 100 possessions.
On the season as a whole, Brooklyn has risen to 12th in Adjusted Net Rating and has been powered by its top-10 Adjusted Offensive Rating, per Dunksandthrees.
When we look at the Nets’ shot profile, it screams for regression based solely on the raw numbers; however, given their personnel, it makes sense that their Actual eFG% is significantly better than their Expected eFG%. They have elite shot makers in Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving who skew those percentages because they are an absolute bucket from anywhere on the floor.
Royce O’Neale is one player who specifically has benefitted from Irving’s return. I wrote about him in my Player Prop Forecast, but he is one of Irving’s favorite teammates to pass the ball to, and Irving’s ability to stretch the floor while incorporating his teammates has opened up better looks for O’Neale. In nine games with Irving, O’Neale has buried at least two 3-pointers eight times. I’ll be playing this prop at (-140).
Shorthanded 76ers Looking for Answers
The Philadelphia 76ers are beat up heading into tonight’s contest. They will be without Joel Embiid (foot), Tyrese Maxey (foot) and James Harden (foot) while Tobias Harris (hip) and Furkan Korkmaz (knee) are both probable to play. This leaves them with a projected starting lineup of De’Anthony Melton, Shake Milton, Danuel House, Tobias Harris and P.J. Tucker.
They will be at a significant disadvantage due to their health. It is impossible to replace just Embiid, let alone Maxey and Harden as well. This game opened at a pick’em but has since moved to -7.5 with Embiid being ruled out. While Embiid alone is not worth 7.5 points to the spread, his absence is exacerbated due to the collective absences.
The 76ers have only played 97 possessions without Embiid, Harden, and Maxey this season. In those possessions, they have a -16.1 Point Differential while scoring just 97.9 points per 100 possessions and allowing 114 points per 100 possessions.
This game could get ugly quickly. It’s not just that these minutes are bad from the direct backups; it means the 76ers need to get deeper into their bench, which creates an even bigger mismatch for the Nets.
While Doc Rivers could use this as an opportunity to get Bball Paul (Reed) more minutes, I don’t have much faith in his rotations considering Reed has played just 8.3 minutes per game this season. Expect big doses of both Milton and Melton and once again, and refer to my Props Forecast for how to bet their props tonight.
The Nets have a significant edge here, and even though Harris has been upgraded to probable for tonight’s game, this isn’t enough firepower for the 76ers to contend.
DraftKings has an “Up By 10” Early Win Promo on a moneyline wager, and there may be value on the 76ers for that specific promotion because there are so many opportunities for a 10-point swing; however, I have no doubt that the Nets will win tonight’s game.
Brooklyn is healthier and is the better team at the moment. I’ll lay the points with the Nets.
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