The Milwaukee Bucks make their season debut this Friday on the road against the 0-1 Philadelphia 76ers. Will Giannis Antetokounmpo lead the Bucks to a victory? Or, will the Sixers prevent a 0-2 start by downing the visiting Bucks?
Catch this game live on Friday, October 21, at 7:30 am, Manila time
Away: Milwaukee Bucks (0-0/0-0 Away)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Jrue Holiday
- SG: Grayson Allen
- SF: Wesley Matthews
- PF: Giannis Antetokounmpo
- C: Brook Lopez
Expect a ton of Giannis Antetokounmpo servings this Friday over the side of the Bucks. They will be kicking their season without All-Star forward Khris Middleton, who is still recovering from wrist surgery. Middleton was the Bucks’ second-leading scorer a season ago when he averaged 20.1 points per game, and without him this Friday, Milwaukee will have to ask more from Antetokounmpo, who put up 29.9 points per game a season ago while shooting 55.3 FG%.
It’s not exactly a good thing because Antetokounmpo can do it all, and it’s not like he will roll without a capable sidekick. Milwaukee still has Jrue Holiday, who is a sharp weapon on both ends of the court. Grayson Allen should also see big minutes to further space the floor for Milwaukee. Allen shot over 40% from deep last season. The Bucks are 8-3 against the spread in their last 11 road games dating back to the 2021-22 NBA season.
Home: Philadelphia 76ers (0-1/0-0 Home)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Tyrese Maxey
- SG: James Harden
- SF: Tobias Harris
- PF: P.J. Tucker
- C: Joel Embiid
Although they lost in their season opener to the Boston Celtics on the road, 126-117, last Wednesday, the Sixers can take heart from the fact that James Harden looked like he’s in his top form again. Following a season in which he battled hamstring injuries, Harden made his 2022-23 debut and went off in the Celtics game for 35 points on 9/14 shooting from the field and a perfect 12/12 from the free-throw line. However, the Sixers only had 16 assists, with Harden chipping in seven of those.
Better ball movement is needed for Philly which was averaging 23.7 dimes per game last season. If anything, Harden and company could be catching a Bucks team that is still a little bit rusty and cold given that this is only Milwaukee’s first game of the season. The Sixers have warmed up and will be playing at home, where they have covered the spread in five of the last seven games there.
Spread: The Sixers (-4) cover the spread.
Over/Under: The Over (225.0) hits.