The struggling Cleveland Cavaliers look to turn their season around against the second-best team in the east, Philadelphia. Below is the breakdown for our matchup preview of the Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Philadelphia 76ers, including our prediction, the best bets, and the starting lineups that both teams will deploy!
Cleveland Cavaliers Vs. Philadelphia 76ers Prediction
Our pick for the Cavs and Sixers game is dependent on the availability of Caris LeVert. If LeVert can suit up, then we will have to re-evaluate; however, as it stands, with Mitchell listed as out and LeVert stuck with a questionable designation, the Sixers -7.5 looks strong.
Philly is a very deep team, with players like Nic Batum, Robert Covington, Marcus Morris, Jaden Springer, Patrick Beverley, Paul Reed, and others providing valuable minutes. As a matter of fact, the Sixers are 5-0 with Batum in the lineup, proving that the addition of those Clippers’ players in the James Harden trade provided valuable wing depth.
Unfortunately, if LeVert doesn’t play, the Cavs are seriously lacking depth; they will have Craig Porter logging a substantial amount of minutes. The backup shooting guard for Cleveland is Max Strus, who is already starting. This means that its options are extraordinarily limited in the backcourt. The bottom line: Cleveland’s second unit can’t possibly compete with Philly’s in its current state.
Cleveland Cavaliers Vs. Philadelphia 76ers Prediction: Sixers -7.5
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Cleveland Cavaliers Vs. Philadelphia 76ers Best Odds
Philadelphia is a 7.5-point home favorite against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Tuesday night. The Sixers have Moneyline odds of -325, while Cleveland is a +260 road dog to knock off Philly. The Over/Under for this bout is 220.5 points, which indicates a relatively low-scoring game.
Cleveland Cavaliers Starting Lineup
Philadelphia 76ers Starting Lineup
Cleveland Cavaliers Vs. Philadelphia 76ers Injuries
The Cavaliers have been fighting the injury bug so far this season and will continue to be without Ty Jerome, Isaac Okoro, Donovan Mitchell, and Ricky Rubio. Caris LeVert is listed as questionable for this game.
Meanwhile, Philadelphia will be without Kelly Oubre Jr., who was struck by a car earlier this month. Oubre Jr. could make a return this season, but likely not in the foreseeable future.
Cleveland Cavaliers Vs. Philadelphia 76ers Key Matchups
The key matchup for Cleveland versus Philadelphia belongs to each team’s backcourt, as Embiid is bound to have a big game, no matter who he plays against. Look at the analysis for both squads’ guards below!
Cavs Backcourt vs. Sixers Backcourt
Joel Embiid will always “get his,” as he is the reigning MVP and one of the most talented two-way big men in the history of the NBA; however, it has been Tyrese Maxey who has made all of the difference for this Philly team that has not only survived but thrived, too, in the absence of James Harden.
Maxey has averaged just shy of 27 points, seven assists, and five rebounds this season, looking every bit the part of an All-Star and Most Improved Player award winner. One of the questions surrounding Maxey entering this season was whether or not his efficiency would fall off with more usage. It has not.
As a matter of fact, Maxey’s shooting split looks eerily similar to last season despite having a much heavier load to carry for Philly; it turns out that the Sixers don’t really need Harden.
Meanwhile, Cleveland has two All-Star-caliber guards, but it has struggled to stay healthy so far this season, with Donovan Mitchell missing the past two games and Darius Garland being out for three total games. The two have only played together in six games this season, and the Cavs went 3-3 in those bouts. Mitchell will miss this game, too.
If LeVert can’t play, the Cavaliers might have to lean on Max Strus and Dean Wade to pick up the slack and play nearly the entire game. Maxey and Melton have an incredibly favorable matchup. Advantage: Sixers Backcourt.