The Sixers head to Detroit to face the Pistons
The Philadelphia 76ers are heading to Detroit tonight to face the Detroit Pistons after sweeping a two-game series against the Boston Celtics. The Sixers are currently 11-5 and sit atop of the Eastern Conference, 1.5 games ahead of the Milwaukee Bucks. The Pistons are a team still struggling to find their identity around their young core and will enter tonight’s game looking to avoid their fourth consecutive loss.
Joel Embiid and a healthy Sixers starting five remain undefeated on the season and the front-runner for MVP has proven to be unstoppable on the court this year. Embiid enters tonight averaging 27.3 points per game and 11.3 rebounds per game. Defensively, the Sixers as a whole are ranked fourth in the NBA in defensive efficiency and have made a living this year shutting opposing teams down in the paint.
Joel Embiid is currently listed as questionable (back) for tonight’s game, which shouldn’t come as a surprise given the fact it’s a second night of a back-to-back. Thankfully for the Sixers, Dwight Howard has proved to be a reliable backup center when called upon.
Ben Simmons Offensively
Ben Simmons showed everyone what he could be last night vs the Celtics. Simmons dominated the fourth quarter last night, scoring 11 points while being all over the court defensively and finding open shooters on the perimeter. When the Sixers are healthy, this team was built to benefit the play of Ben Simmons. Tonight will be a perfect game for Simmons to explode offensively against a Piston teams that surrender 49.2% shooting from opposing teams. The floor will be open for everyone on the Sixers because of the attention that Embiid demands in the paint.
The Importance of Seth Curry
Seth Curry returned to the court last night against the Celtics and reminded everyone how valuable of a player he is to the Sixers. Curry shot 6-10 from the floor (3-5 from three point range) and scored 15 points. His presence on the court with Embiid and Simmons is something that opposing defenses can’t ignore and has paid off for everyone with the spacing he provides offensively.
Stop Grant, Win the Game
For the Pistons, Derrick Rose, Blake Griffin, and Killian Hayes are all ruled out tonight leaving Jerami Grant to play hero ball to keep this game close. He will get plenty attention from the Sixers defense tonight and if the Sixers can contain Grant, it should be a relatively easy victory tonight, even with the game being the second leg of a back-to-back on the road.
The Sixers are currently -7 (-110) tonight vs the Pistons. There’s no reason why you shouldn’t hammer that bet. The Sixers are a team that’s finally healthy and have depth on the bench. Offensively, the Pistons don’t have enough firepower to battle against the Sixers strong defense. Sixers win handedly and improve to 12-5 on the season, remaining the top seed in the Eastern Conference.
Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline | USA TODAY Sports