A tasty Atlantic Division matchup is on tap this Sunday as the Brooklyn Nets pay the Philadelphia 76ers a visit. This is the first meeting between these two squads this season.
Catch this game live on Sunday, February 7, at 9 AM, Manila time
HOME TEAM: Philadelphia 76ers (16-7, 10-2 at home)
Projected Starting Five:
SG: Furkan Korkmaz
SG: Seth Curry
SF: Danny Green
PF: Tobias Harris
C: Joel Embiid
The Sixers have some bad taste in their mouth they want to rinse off after getting upset by the Portland Trail Blazers last Friday, 121-105. The Sixers were supposed to dominate Portland, which, apart from missing CJ McCollum and Jusuf Nurkic, were missing Damian Lillard.
Instead, the Sixers relied too much on Joel Embiid and suffered their first loss in five games. To be fair, the Sixes also didn’t have Ben Simmons, as the Australian national had some lower-body issue to deal with. Simmons is currently tagged probable to play against Brooklyn and an extra day of rest might be enough for his body to recover in time for Sunday’s contest.
But if he gets ruled out again, expect Furkan Korkmaz to draw another start and Embiid to get a heavier load on offense. Embiid tore apart Blazers big man Enes Kanter with a 37-point performance on 14-of-21 shooting.
The Nets’ interior defense looks like a deer in the headlights for Embiid, as Brooklyn is just 28th in the league with 50.6 paint points allowed per game.
ROAD TEAM: Brooklyn Nets (14-9, 4-5 on the road)
Projected Starting Five:
PG: Kyrie Irving
SG: James Harden
SG: Bruce Brown
SF: Joe Harris
C: DeAndre Jordan
After stitching together four wins in a row, the Nets are now just 1-2 straight up in their last three games, as they lost to the Toronto Raptors at home on Saturday. The Nets had to deal with a confusing off-court issue that involved Kevin Durant, who did not start due to health and safety protocols and was pulled from the game for the same reason.
Durant is not going to be in Philly this Sunday and will continue to stay in Brooklyn. Without Durant, the Nets could give Bruce Brown another spot start. Brown was decent against Toronto, scoring 13 points with six rebounds in 25 minutes. The pair of Kyrie Irving and James Harden combined for just 32 points, with the latter taking only eight shots.
Harden has to be more aggressive in looking for his own shots against the Sixers, especially since Durant will not be there on the floor. The Nets’ offense should be fine even without Durant.
They entered the Raptors game with a 70.67 TS% whenever Durant is off the floor and while Harden and Irving are on — higher than when all three are on the court at the same time. The total has hit the over in seven of their last 10 road games.
Embiid will go to work early, knowing there’s virtually no one behind DeAndre Jordan who has the muscle to match up with him. Embiid feast inside and finishes the game with at least 30 points to lead the Sixers to a 124-119 win.