The Phoenix Suns (2-3) battle the Philadelphia 76ers (3-1) this Saturday (11/4/23). Get Suns vs. 76ers moneyline and spread odds, as well as predictions, starting lineups, injuries, and key matchup below.
Phoenix Suns vs. Philadelphia 76ers Prediction
Phoenix has held up relatively well from a team defense standpoint, but they are not equipped to handle the elite scorers. Opponents are achieving the second largest isolation points per possession, and the Suns rank 19th defending pick-and-roll ball handlers. Tyrese Maxey’s straight-line speed and off-the-dribble scoring will challenge Phoenix’s guards, especially Devin Booker, who is dealing with an ankle injury. Meanwhile, Jusuf Nurkic has the strength to bump Embiid in the post, but his reaction time and length are not equal to the task of defending the reigning MVP.
Maxey (27.3 PPG) and Embiid (30.3 PPG) likely kill the Suns when they are left on islands, but Phoenix will find it difficult to compensate. De’Anthony Melton, Kelly Oubre, and Tobias Harris are all floor-stretchers that pull defenders away from the paint. Embiid’s improved passing in particular has picked opponents apart when they double him. Philadelphia’s humming offense (3rd in Offensive Rating) should continue to run smoothly here against a Phoenix defense that cannot play their typical team defense.
On the other end, the 76ers are in a better position to limit the Suns. Joel Embiid’s rim protection (2.5 BPG) and elite rebounding essentially bar Nurkic from his typical impact. Devin Booker will still put up numbers, but Melton has the defensive chops to quench an eruption. Per Basketball Index’s metrics, Melton ranked second across the NBA in both perimeter isolation defense and ball screen navigation. Phoenix’s Booker-Nurkic action will be somewhat ineffective against Melton and Embiid. Outside of Kevin Durant – who can cook Philadelphia – Phoenix doesn’t possess the ball handling wings to exploit Philadelphia. That’s the downside of a roster riddled with catch-and-shoot wings.
Finally, the Suns quietly own decent depth; however, the 76ers boast a deep bench themselves. New acquisition Robert Covington provides Philadelphia with a viable Durant defender, while Patrick Beverley can be a pest against Phoenix’s guards.
Overall, the 76ers are playing at a high-level right now and removed the James Harden stormcloud hanging over them. On the other end, Bradley Beal remains out, and Phoenix’s lack of chemistry is apparent (and expected). Backing Philadelphia at home is the best bet here.
Phoenix Suns vs. Philadelphia 76ers Prediction: 76ers moneyline
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Phoenix Suns vs. Philadelphia 76ers Best Odds
The Philadelphia 76ers enter this contest favored by 3.5 points. In order for Phoenix’s +136 moneyline to have a positive expected value, they must win this matchup about 42% of the time. Otherwise, it’s not a long-term profitable bet.
Phoenix Suns Starting Lineup
Philadelphia 76ers Starting Lineup
Phoenix Suns vs. Philadelphia 76ers Injuries
Prized off-season acquisition Bradley Beal remains out for Phoenix, as well as sharpshooter Damion Lee. The 76ers will be without Nic Batum and perhaps Marcus Morris, who is a game time decision.
Phoenix Suns vs. Philadelphia 76ers Key Matchups
76ers 3PT Shooting
Philadelphia currently ranks 5th in the NBA at an excellent 39.7 3PT%. Maxey, Harris, and Oubre are all above 45 percent from three on sizable volume, while Embiid sits at a 37.5 3PT%. It’s nearly impossible for teams to defend Embiid when he has four knockdown shooters surrounding him, so the 76ers should shred the Suns if they shoot an above average mark from distance here. Otherwise, the offense could turn sluggish once Embiid becomes frustrated with the misses and begins to emphasize his post scoring.