NBA on TNT - Philadelphia 76ers at Golden State Warriors Preview
PHILADELPHIA 76ers (33-18) @ GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS (36-14)
Location – Oracle Arena - Oakland, CA
Tip – 10:30 est
Line – Golden State -9.5
Lean - Philly to cover +9.5
We all knew this sort of run was coming from the Warriors at some point. They have now won 11 games in a row after just finishing up a 5-0 road trip. Tonight, they return home to a raucous home crowd to take on the Sixers who are still in the middle of figuring out "The Process" on the fly. Both teams expect to make deep runs in the playoffs and it is very difficult to imagine a scenario where Golden State doesn't win another championship. Barring an injury, they have too much talent for anyone to hang with them over the course of 7 games. Three of the best shooters of all time, one of the most physically gifted centers in the last 20 years, and Draymond who is the perfect glue guy and does pretty much everything at an all-star level. We get it, they are the best team in the league.
Now that we are done kissing the ring of the Champs, let's take a look at the other side of the court. The 76ers have put together a very talented starting 5 of their own. They are highlighted by a couple of generational talents that are both basically 7-footers. Joel Embiid is the real deal and has the skillset and physicality to be a top 5 during any era. He combines the down-low banger with the modern vision and long-range touch. Ben Simmons makes for an interesting match-up for any team, but is also an anomaly in the modern NBA for someone that legitimately plays the 1. Simmons at 1, Reddick at 2, Jimmy Butler 3...there's no debating Simmons really is the Sixers PG. The crazy part...he has never made a 3-pointer in his NBA career. He was 0-11 in his rookie campaign and is only 0-1 this year. Talk about a juxtaposed position vs. the Warriors that run and gun, making threes at rates that basically set new records every season.
Our models have this game in favor of GS by 7.8 points. When we compare that to the current market line of 9.5 we have almost two points of value for the visiting 76ers. Despite the differences in style and relative "hotness" of the Warriors, there aren't any caveats for us to not lean in the direction of our system outputs. This is right on the verge of GreenZone, so we'd even qualify it as a strong lean. Take the points, watch the 76ers try to scrap it up, make the game as physical as possible, and possibly sweat out a couple free throws and meaningless possessions late as we try to keep it under 10!