Today’s NBA play of the day is a battle between two of the most impressive teams in the NBA. The Philadelphia 76ers are undefeated through five contests. The Phoenix Suns have been competitive in every game this year and have won four of their first six. This should be an exciting and high-scoring contest between two surging squads. Let’s dig in.
- Opening Lines: The line for this contest opened at -1.5 on Philadelphia. The over/under total opened at expertly set 222 points. The point spread has seen some movement at some books and is available at both the opening line of -1.5, and -2. The consensus over/under total has seen a slight increase to 223.
- Current Line: Houston -2
- O/U: 223
- Location: Talking Stick Resort Arena, Phoenix, Arizona
- Start Time: 9:00 PM EST, Friday, November 4th
- Last Meeting: Philadelphia defeated Phoenix 132-127 – January 16, 2019
The Philadelphia 76ers have been one of the best teams in basketball this season. Unfortunately, their most noteworthy and newsworthy highlight of the season was the scuffle between star big man Joel Embiid and the Minnesota Timberwolves Karl Anthony-Towns. The 76ers strong start has been impressive due to the offseason losses of star Jimmy Butler and sharpshooter J.J. Reddick. They brought in Josh Richardson and Al Horford, two underrated players relative to their contributions in and out of the boxscore. The 76ers still profile as one of the best teams in a weakened Eastern Conference that saw last year’s NBA Finals MVP bolt to the Los Angeles Clippers. Philadelphia is a perfect 5-0 on the season and will be looking to keep the good times rolling against a Suns team that has been better than expected. If Embiid was playing we would be looking at a significantly higher point spread for this contest. He will miss one more game due to his suspension stemming from the aforementioned fight with Towns.
The surprise team of the NBA after two weeks of action? The Phoenix Suns. Phoenix has an impressive 4-2 record on the season. However, that number needs to be put into context. Phoenix has just one win against a good team this season as they beat the Los Angeles Clippers with Kawhi. They lost the other outings they were expected to lose against the Utah Jazz and Denver Nuggets but were much more competitive than one may expect if they were not paying early-season attention to what has been a perennial lottery team. The Suns are a much better team with Deandre Ayton on the floor, but, unfortunately, he was injured in the team’s first game and has yet to make his return. The Suns’ hot start may give them the confidence they need to compete for one of the final playoff spots in the West, but make no mistake, this Suns team is not yet ready to take that next step. They can change this perception with more wins against good teams and by keeping up their hot play when their schedule gets tougher in December.
- The road team is 4-0 ATS in the last four contests between these two teams.
- Over is 7-1 in the last eight contests between these two teams.
- Over is 4-0 in the last four contests between these two teams played in Phoenix.
- Philadelphia is 3-1 ATS on the season.
- Philadelphia is 1-1 ATS on the road this season.
- Phoenix is 6-0 ATS on the season.
- Phoenix is 3-0 ATS at home this season.
- Philadelphia is 5-1-1 ATS in their last seven contests.
- Philadelphia is 3-1-1 ATS in their last five contests following a straight up win.
- Philadelphia is 6-2 in their last eight contests on one day of rest.
- Philadelphia is 5-0 ATS in their last five contests against teams with winning records.
- Philadelphia is 25-10 ATS in their last 35 contest against the Pacific division.
- Phoenix is 4-0 ATS in their last four home contests.
- Phoenix is 6-0 ATS in their last six contests following a win ATS.
- Phoenix is 6-0 ATS in their last six contests.
- Phoenix is 1-4 ATS in their last five contests against teams with a winning record.
- Phoenix is 8-3 ATS in their last 11 Monday contests.
- Under is 5-1 in Philadelphia’s last six contests against winning teams.
- Under is 8-2 in Philadelphia’s last 10 contests following a straight up win.
- Under is 10-4 in Philadelphia’s last 14 contests.
- Under is 6-1 in Phoenix’s last seven contests following a straight up win.
- Under is 5-1 in Phoenix’s last six contests.
- Under is 5-1 in Phoenix last six contests following a win ATS.
- Under is 4-1 in Phoenix’s last five contests against the Atlantic division.
Tobias Harris over 20.5 points (-113)
One of the top player props for this contest, Tobias Harris is line for a big scoring night with Joel Embiid suspended. This number is inflated from Harris’ points per game on the season specifically because Embiid is out. Harris is averaging 19.6 points per game on the year. He put up a solid 23 points in Embiid’s first game on suspension. In a contest with a 223 point consensus over/under total, the scoring is expected to be plentiful enough to allow Harris to go over the posted total. Harris should operate as the team’s number one for this contest with Al Horford scaling back from the 24 shots he hoisted against a Blazers team without Hassan Whiteside and the Sixers without Embiid. Harris has cleared this total in just two of his games this season, but the selection of the over here is due to the extra shots available without Embiid.
Al Horford over 8.5 rebounds (+100)
The juice on this prop is currently heavily on the under. The under sits at -134 compared to +100 for the over at PointsBet. Believe it or not, Horford managed just five rebounds without Embiid against Portland. A poor bet to cross the 8.5 barrier on a nightly basis, Horford has not averaged over 8.5 rebounds since the 2012-13 season for Atlanta. With that being said, this is once again an over play due to the absence of Joel Embiid. Horford has actually cleared this total in a surprising three of five contests this season. Again, this is not something he is going to keep up, potentially explaining why the juice on the under is so high. It is also a possibility that this number opened at eight points even, and that the current juice we are seeing is due to a line change. Regardless of the reason, there is some opportunity here. Horford was able to snare 16 rebounds against Minnesota (the game Embiid got ejected from), but that was with Karl-Anthony Towns playing only 20 minutes due to being ejected. He put up nine rebounds against Andre Drummond and the Detroit Pistons and was also able to do so against John Collins and the Atlanta Hawks. Doing so against Aaron Baynes should be a much easier task. Take the even money for a one-unit return.
A Philadelphia 76ers team that was able to defeat the Portland Trailblazers at home despite not having the services of Joel Embiid appears to be a good bet to cover a forgiving -1.5 point spread against the Phoenix Suns. Phoenix has started the season out strong with a 4-2 record and has scored an equally impressive 115 points per game. They are not exactly stifling opponents on the defensive side of the ball as they have surrendered 106 points per game, a mark that ties them with the Philadelphia 76ers.
The over/under total for this contest was set at a perfect 222 points that has climbed to 223 overnight. There will be a distinct lack of defense played in this contest, with possessions being valued over slowing the game down to find the very best shot on the floor. The trends scream under, but the over still appears to be the play despite the bump. This was confirmed by the sharp and early bettor overnight movement.
As far as the point spread is concerned, despite being a perfect 6-0 against the spread this season, Phoenix is 1-2 straight up against good teams. That good team was without All-Star Paul George, one of their two best players. Embiid will be out for this contest, but Embiid’s track record of spotty availability is the exact reason the 76ers made the controversial addition of Al Horford in the first place. They can play together fine, but Horford will allow Embiid to heal when he picks up the inevitable random ailments, and to rest when needed, or in this case, when suspended. Some line shopping via our live odds page shows us that we can lock in the 76ers at -1.5 at only five cents juice at BetMGM. If we act fast we can lock in over 222.5 at -115 at BetMGM.