Tune-In Tidbits: TNT Tuesday, April 6, 2021
Get ready for Tuesday's TNT doubleheader with five key stats to know about each matchup.
Brian Martin, for NBA.com
Sixers (34-16) at Celtics (25-25)
• The Sixers lead the season series with the Celtics 2-0 — sweeping a two-game series on Jan 20-22 — with Joel Embiid averaging 40 points on 67.6% shooting and 10.5 rebounds over the two games. It is Embiid’s highest scoring average against any team he’s faced more than once and his highest field goal percentage against any team he’s faced this season.
• The Sixers won their first game with Embiid back on Saturday against the Timberwolves 122-113, but lost to Memphis the following night (100-116) while Embiid sat the back-to-back. Without their Kia MVP candidate, the Sixers offensive rating drops from 118.2 to 105.9 and their effective field goal percentage drops from 57.8% to 51.3%. Sunday night was tied for the fifth-lowest scoring game the Sixers have had all season.
• Shake Milton ranks sixth in scoring among eligible bench players, averaging 13.5 ppg in 23.8 mpg. As a team, the Sixers rank 15th in bench scoring (35.2 ppg), while the Celtics rank 26th (31.9 ppg).
• With Daniel Theis being traded and Tristan Thompson out tonight due to health and safety protocols, the tall task of locking up Embiid will fall on Robert Williams III. He ranks sixth in the league in blocks (1.8 bpg) and holds opponents to 55% shooting within six feet of the basket, which is 5.8 percentage points lower than their normal average from that distance.
• The Celtics are coming off home wins over Houston (+16) and Charlotte (+30) — two of their top seven biggest wins of the season. Tuesday’s game against Philadelphia is the fifth game of a seven-game homestand for the Celtics, who are 15-9 at home this season compared to 10-16 on the road. The biggest difference for the Celtics at home comes on the defensive end as they allow 109.8 points per 100 possession at home (12th) compared to 113.6 on the road (22nd).
Bucks (32-17) at Warriors (23-27)
• The Bucks won the first meeting of the season with the Warriors, 138-99 on Christmas Day, behind Khris Middleton’s 31 points in 26 minutes. Andrew Wiggins was the primary defender on Middleton for a team-high 3:08 (35.2% of Middleton’s offensive matchup time) and held Middleton to two points on 0-for-3 from the field and 2-for-2 on free throws. Middleton scored 61.3% of his points over 22.4% of his offensive matchup time when being defended by either Eric Paschall (8 points, 3-for-4 FG, 2-3 3-pointers, 54 seconds matchup time) or Stephen Curry (11 points, 3-for-3 FG, 2-for-2 3-pointers, 3-for-3 free throws, 43 seconds).
• During the Bucks’ win on Christmas Day, they shot 20-36 (55.6%) from 3-point range as a team. There have been 17 games across the league this season in which a team has made at least 20 3-pointers while shooting 55% or better from beyond the arc — the Bucks lead the league with four such games; the Warriors have one.
• The Bucks enter Tuesday ranked fifth in the league in offensive efficiency (116.4 points per 100 possessions) and second in effective field goal percentage (56.8%). They will face a Warriors team ranked ninth in defensive efficiency (110.3) and seventh in opponent effective field goal percentage (52.7%).
• James Wiseman ranks fifth among eligible rookies in scoring (11.4 ppg), second in rebounds (5.8 rpg) and fourth in blocks (1.0 bpg) despite being 15th in minutes played (21.7 mpg). Wiseman scores two/thirds (7.6 ppg) of his points in the paint, but will be facing a Bucks team that allows the third-fewest points in the paint at 42.9 per game.
• This is the fifth game of a six-game road trip for the Bucks, which began on March 29 with a loss to the Clippers, followed by three straight wins against the Lakers, Kings and Blazers. The Bucks are 14-10 on the road this season, averaging 119.3 points per game (2nd) but allowing 115.1 (21st) to their opponents. Giannis Antetokounmpo averages 29.7 points and 12.0 rebounds on the road with 19 double-doubles in 23 road games. Denver’s Nikola Jokic (20 in 25 games) is the only player with more road double-doubles than Giannis.