76ers Seek Answers Minus Embiid
The writing was on the wall when reports broke out that the Philadelphia 76ers superstar Joel Embiid would be “out indefinitely” due to a facial injury. You need not be an NBA expert to predict a Miami Heat victory as that was the consensus in nearly ever 76ers vs Heat betting analysis.
Philadelphia enters Wednesday’s Game 2 as even bigger underdogs than Game 1 and the results could be similar: A double-digit victory from the Heat. The Sixers will not be able to replace the production of Embiid. He is their best player on both ends of the court. The team was 15.6 points better when he played against the Toronto Raptors in the first round and 11.5 points better in the regular season.
DeAndre Jordan was a terrible replacement for Embiid. The former All-Star player is washed and was a -22 in Game 1 despite playing just 17 minutes. But, the Sixers don’t have too many options and may be forced to play small while allowing Heat center Bam Adebayo to be a beast all night.
- Team records: Philadelphia 76ers 55-34 (fourth seed in East); Miami Heat (58-30, first seed in East).
- Date: Wednesday, 7:30 p.m. ET
- Television/live stream: TNT
- Location: FTX Arena, Miami
Heat: Pedal to Metal
Speaking of Adebayo, the 2020 NBA All-Star couldn’t be stopped in Game 1. He posted 24 points and 12 rebounds while missing just two shots. He was also a +26 and had a defensive rating of 92, the best in the game. He won’t be in too many Miami Heat vs Philadelphia 76ers highlights, but he is the main reason that the Eastern Conference’s top seed will dominate this series.
The Miami Heat are sharks when they smell blood and can push the Sixers to a corner by going up 2-0 in the series. Miami shut down Philadelphia’s shooting, limiting the Sixers to just 6 of 34 from behind the arc, which is their second-worst mark all season. The Heat used to struggle to defend the long ball but that won’t be an issue against Philadelphia.
Not only does Philadelphia sorely lack consistent three-point threats outside of James Harden, but the presence of Victor Oladipo and Caleb Martin gives Miami more weapons they can throw at perimeter players. Even without Kyle Lowry, the Heat should handle business against the Sixers.
Harden Having Hard Time
If you want betting tips for the NBA playoffs, fade James Harden on the online sportsbook’s player props. Not only is the former MVP a shell of who he was, but the absence of Embiid has allowed Miami to isolate him and make his life a living hell.
Harden has lost some pep in his step and he can no longer create the separation at which he excelled. Even one-on-one, Harden will have a tough time shrugging off Miami’s lengthy and relentless defenders. He was limited to just 16 points on 5-of-13 shooting and had as many turnovers as he had assists (5) in the opener.
Tyrese Maxey, who put up 21.3 points on 51.1 percent shooting against the Raptors, was also held in check. And while he and Tobias Harris led the team in scoring, they were both a game-worst -25. Miami would be more than happy to let Maxey and Harris score as much as they want given the recent results.
76ers vs Heat Betting Tips
With the Game 1 loss to the Miami Heat, the Philadelphia 76ers fell to 6-8 with Embiid out of the lineup this season. They are 1-1 against the Heat.
The Heat are 6-4 against the spread (ATS) in their last 10 games against the Philadelphia 76ers. They are also 6-1 in their last seven home games against them.
The 76ers have dropped to 2-7 ATS in their last nine road games. They are 10-7 ATS overall as a road underdog, which is the third-best spread record in the Eastern Conference.
The total has gone under in all six of Miami’s playoff games. Similarly, five of Philadelphia’s last six games have gone under. Against each other, the total has gone under in four of their five games this season.Follow us on Twitter