The Philadelphia 76ers have looked like a different team since Joel Embiid came back. Can they steal home court advantage from the Miami Heat in Game 5? Catch this game live on May 11, at 7:30 AM, Manila time.
Away: Philadelphia 76ers (2-2, 0-2 Away)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Tyrese Maxey
- SG: James Harden
- SF: Danny Green
- PF: Tobias Harris
- C: Joel Embiid
The James Harden of old came back in Game 4, and got the Sixers the win. The Beard scored 16 of his 31 points in the fourth quarter when they needed him most, and he added seven rebounds, nine assists and a steal to his tally by the time the game ended. They’ll be needing more of that from him because they’ll need to space the floor and allow Joel Embiid to operate.
Embiid had a solid game on his own accord as well, with 24 points and 11 rebounds while shooting 7 of 13 from the field, and we’ll have to see if he can do even better now that he’ll have had two full games under his belt to get his conditioning back. Embiid was pivotal in the first quarter, where he scored 15 points to get the Sixers into a groove.
However, the two stars will still need help like they did in Game 4, where a total of six Philadelphia players scored in double figures.
I imagine that the Heat will key in on Harden early, which should open up more space for Embiid. He’ll want to get off to a fast start again, so that the rest of the Sixers can find their spots. Tyrese Maxey will also be a key factor, as his efficient 18 points on 5 of 10 shooting balanced out the offense for Philadelphia.
Home: Miami Heat (2-2, 2-0 Home)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Kyle Lowry
- SG: Max Strus
- SF: Jimmy Butler
- PF: PJ Tucker
- C: Bam Adebayo
Wow, Jimmy Butler needs help. The man has scored 77 points in the last two games, but outscored the rest of his starting five in both contests. There’s only so much that Jimmy Buckets can do, but it’s probably safe to assume that he’s going to have another monster night.
Bam Adebayo had a marked improvement in Game 4 with 21 points compared to his nine in Game 3, but will need to continue building on the success he found on the offensive end. That’s easier said than done with Joel Embiid in front of him, but this is when he really needs to step up.
I don’t think the rest of the Heat starters play as badly as they did in the two games in Philadelphia, but if they do, it’s going to be a long night.
Spread: I like the 76ers at +3.
Over/Under: I think the over 209.5 hits.