The daily NBA preview takes it to the rim for the Philadelphia 76ers’ home clash with the San Antonio Spurs.
12:00 (AEDT), Sat 22nd Nov @ Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia
History: Played 102: Spurs 62 V 76ers 40
Last meeting: January 23, 2019: 76ers 122 d Spurs 120 at Wells Fargo Center
Final Thoughts: The Philadelphia 76ers are aiming to keep up with the Eastern Conference pace-setters, while the San Antonio Spurs are desperately seeking an end to their losing streak.
The 9-5 Sixers are fifth in the East but haven’t quick lived up to their elite projections so far this season. After losing four of their previous six, they have overwhelmed struggling duo the Cavaliers (114-95) and Knicks (109-104) in their last two.
The NBA world is losing its mind after Ben Simmons final drained his first career three-pointer. It was part of a solid all-round showing against the Knicks (18 pts, 7 reb, 13 ast). Meanwhile, marquee man Joel Embiid is averaging 22.9 points and 11.5 rebounds. Key signing Al Horford has been solid without setting the world on fire. The team’s overall defence has disappointed.
The Spurs were looking in decent shape when they won four of their first five games. But they have slumped to a 5-10 record on the back of seven straight losses.
San Antonio went down 138-132 to the underwhelming Wizards in their last outing. While their DeMar DeRozan-led offence is firing, the Spurs’ defence is ranked bottom-four – unheard of in the Gregg Popovich era – and it’s hard to see how they did their way out.
After the Spurs won 12 straight against the 76ers from 2012-17, the Sixers have won three of the last four. Last season the Spurs cruised home 123-96 in San Antonio, before the 76ers snuck in 122-120 in Philadelphia.
Simmons had a triple-double and Embiid coupled 33 points with 19 rebounds in the latter encounter.
Further illustrating how this one should go, the Sixers are 5-0 at home and the Spurs are 1-6 on the road. The Spurs’ last four losses were by seven or less but the 76ers look a solid bet to cover.
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