The New York Knicks are 2-0 since their Saturday trade for OG Anunoby. They’ll look to continue that stretch against a 23-win Philadelphia 76ers team on the road.
The 76ers are coming off a 110-97 win over the Bulls and have won three of their last four NBA games. Joel Embiid is rising in the NBA MVP discussion after scoring more than 40 points per game in December through nine games.
He also began January with a 31-point performance against the Bulls.
That said, oddsmakers believe Embiid and the 76ers have a better chance of earning a win over the Knicks in this game. The Knicks and 76ers have four scheduled games this season, but this will be the first of four games.
Philadelphia is sitting at -6.5, with the total at 226 for this Eastern Conference matchup. (Stay Tuned For Line Movement)
Can the Knicks continue their winning ways with their new-look squad?
Let’s review the Knicks vs 76ers line movements for this ESPN matchup.
Location: Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia, PA
Streaming: Watch Live Sports
Knicks vs 76ers Line Movements & Trends
Philadelphia has won 23 games straight up and has also won 23 games against the spread this season. The 76ers are 13-4 at home and have also hit the Over in 20 of their first 33 games this season.
On the other hand, the Knicks are just 17-15-2 against the spread. They’ve hit the Over in 18 of 34 matchups but have only gone 9-11 on the road this season.
The last time the 76ers and Knicks met was on February 10, last season. Philadelphia earned an 11-point victory as a 7-point favorite.
Isaiah Hartenstein’s Rebounding Masterpiece
Once Mitchell Robinson went down with a season-ending injury, the Knicks were unsure how the rest of the season would play out.
Isaiah Hartenstein was giving the Knicks good minutes from the bench. But it wasn’t clear if he could fill the starter role at center.
He answered all those questions in New York’s last game against the Bulls. Hartenstein added 10 points, 20 rebounds, and five blocks in 37 minutes for the Knicks in a 116-100 win over the Bulls.
Hartenstein added more rebounds than Andre Drummond in that game.
The Knicks center acknowledged that he always felt he could play this role as a starting center. He admitted that he felt he was never given the opportunity until Robinson went down.
Now, he’s making the most of it.
Is Joel Embiid Really On Pace For Greatest Season in NBA History?
Joel Embiid won the MVP last season despite the controversy that Nikola Jokic probably should’ve won it. Many voters got bored betting Jokic to win the award and eventually gave Embiid the MVP title last season.
But he’s outdoing himself again this year.
His teammate, Pat Beverley, said, “If Embiid finishes the season the way he’s playing right now, it would be the greatest season of a single NBA player that’s ever played the game.”
Embiid has averaged nearly 35 points per game and has earned close to 12 rebounds with more than six assists per game. He’s also blocked about two shots per game and has shot over 35% from downtown.
His usage rate is a career-high and is the highest in the NBA this season at 38.1.
Is it the best season of all time? Maybe not. But he’s undoubtedly the favorite for the MVP right now.
The Philadelphia 76ers have one of the best offenses in the NBA this season. They’ve scored 121.7 points per 100 possessions and have turned the ball over 12.3%.
Although the 76ers have only shot a 55.5% effective field goal percentage, they’re getting to the foul line at the highest rate in the league.
Any offense will have success when they can get to the foul line and limit turnovers. However, the 76ers won’t dominate the offensive glass. Second chances could be a little harder to come by for Philadelphia, with the Knicks allowing only 25.4% of offensive rebounds this NBA season.
Isaiah Hartenstein proved that he’s just as good as Mitchell Robinson on the glass after his 20-rebound game against the Bulls. The 76ers will struggle to earn those second chances and probably won’t get to the foul line as often either. After all, the Knicks have allowed an 18.8 free throw rate, which is 7th best in the NBA on defense.
On the other hand, the Knicks are scoring 118.9 points per 100 possessions. That will likely change against the 76ers, who have allowed only 111.2 points per 100 possessions.
The Knicks won’t get the highest-quality looks. They’ll also turn the ball over. But there’s a better chance that the Knicks win second chances and get to the foul line at a high pace.
The 76ers have allowed 27.8% of offensive rebounds and have given up a 21.2 free throw rate. Those are two areas where the Knicks can have success.
If the Knicks get to the foul line at the same rate as the 76ers but earn more second chances, New York could escape with a win.
Once the Knicks vs 76ers line movements stopped, the Knicks stalled at +6 against the spread. The 76ers have a higher probability of winning the NBA Championship when looking at the NBA futures odds. However, the Knicks continue to improve and probably have another trade in them at the deadline.
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