The NBA’s newly inaugurated “Rivals Week” has not disappointed thus far and certainly will not in this battle between the Denver Nuggets and Philadelphia 76ers, which features the two best centers in the game today.
Take a look below at a complete breakdown of the game, including our betting picks and predictions, including an in-depth analysis of the current odds and lines.
Additionally, we have listed out the projected starting lineups and updated injury reports for both teams. Let’s get into it.
Denver Nuggets Vs. Philadelphia 76ers Betting Odds
Philadelphia is a 3.5-point home favorite against Nikola Jokic and the Denver Nuggets. The Sixers only have one player listed on the injury report: Joel Embiid.
Embiid is a game-time decision ahead of the highly anticipated matchup against Denver and Nikola Jokic.
On the other hand, Denver has a lengthy injury report, including Jamal Murray (questionable), Michael Porter Jr (questionable), Jack White (out), Collin Gillespie (out), and Bruce Brown Jr (questionable.)
Jokic and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope are listed as probable and will likely play.
Denver Nuggets Vs. Philadelphia 76ers Prediction
Philadelphia is probably the only other team in the NBA that has been as hot as Denver; it has won six straight games and eight of its past nine, with six of those coming on the road.
The Sixers, and head coach Doc Rivers, have utilized a new strategy: bring Tyrese Maxey off the bench.
When Maxey comes off the bench and plays at least 20 minutes, the Sixers are 5-0 this season; he has significantly improved the scoring output of the Sixers’ bench, which can sometimes lose leads without players like James Harden and Joel Embiid on the floor.
Meanwhile, the Nuggets have been creeping closer to passing the Boston Celtics as the league’s winningest team during the 2022-23 season. Denver had won nine straight games but has since dropped two of its past three.
In the past three games, the Nuggets have failed to eclipse 100 points, a concerning trend for the league’s best offense.
Ultimately, the Sixers have been the hottest team in the league, while Denver has cooled off substantially. Philadelphia is a much healthier team, too, and the Nuggets could miss several key players.
It won’t be a “punt” game for Denver but expect Philly to take care of business.
- Denver is 10-13 ATS on the road in 2022-23
- Philadelphia is 15-9-1 ATS at home in 2022-23
- The combined over record of these two teams is 51-45 in 2022-23
If it wasn’t made abundantly clear above, our key matchup in this bout between two of the hottest teams in the NBA is Nikola Jokic and Joel Embiid, the current MVP favorites for the 2022-23 season.
An analysis of this battle is below, so check it out and see which MVP candidate will have the bigger game!
Nikola Jokic vs. Joel Embiid
Assuming that Jokic (probable) and Embiid (questionable) are able to give it a go, this will undoubtedly be one of the most watched battles of the year.
Jokic and Embiid have gone head-to-head in six total matchups during their careers, with Embiid and the Sixers coming out victors four times.
In those six bouts, Embiid and Jokic have managed to keep each other at bay relative to their usual output. Jokic has posted close to 22 points, nine rebounds, and seven assists on merely a 49/26/81 shooting split.
Embiid has performed similarly, averaging 22 points, 11 rebounds, and three assists on 41% shooting from the floor.
Ultimately, expect a knock-down, drag-out battle between these two MVP frontrunners. With huge “MVP narrative” implications, and an eagerness to close the gap on Jokic, Embiid should have a big game; he did the last time they played. Advantage: Embiid.
Denver Nuggets Starting Lineup
Philadelphia 76ers Starting Lineups
Denver Nuggets Injuries: Nikola Jokic (P), Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (P), Jamal Murray (Q), Michael Porter Jr (Q), Jack White (Out), Collin Gillespie (Out), Bruce Brown (Q)
Philadelphia 76ers Injuries: Joel Embiid (Q)