The Philadelphia 76ers aim to get their first road win of the season as they test the undefeated Detroit Pistons on 10/23/18 at the Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, Michigan.
Gone are the days when the Philadelphia 76ers were the doormat of the NBA. From former GM Sam Hinkie’s “Trust the Process” tagline, the Sixers are now looking to complete the process. Philly barged into the playoffs last season for the first time since 2012 with their dynamic duo of Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons.
One season later, the Sixers are now among the favorites in the LeBron-less Eastern Conference. After dropping their opening assignment against the Boston Celtics, the Sixers have won two in a row and are looking to make it three straight against the Detroit Pistons on Tuesday night.
Joel Embiid has opened the season with three straight double doubles and is averaging an impressive 28.3 points, 10.7 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 2.0 blocks per game. Ben Simmons averaged 16 points, 14 rebounds and 9.5 assists in his first two games before being limited to just 8 minutes in their last game with back stiffness. Simmons is listed questionable for this game and should be a major concern for the Sixers moving forward.
But Philly still has last year’s top pick Markelle Fultz to fill in Simmons’ slot. Fultz is averaging 8.3 points and 4.7 assists per game so far this season. J.J. Redick will need to have another big night to compensate for Simmons’ loss. Redick scored 31 points on 8 three pointers in the Sixers’ win over the Orlando Magic last October 20.
The Detroit Pistons were off to a good start last season but stumbled near the finish line and missed the playoffs. Detroit fired Stan Van Gundy and hired last year’s Coach of the Year Dwane Casey.
So far, the Pistons are 2-0 in the young season but with their wins have come over Brooklyn and Chicago who are expected to be lottery teams this season. Philadelphia will be their first test of the season and this game should give us an idea whether the Pistons are contenders or pretenders this season.
Blake Griffin is playing like the all-star that he is this season. The former Clippers superstar is averaging 29.5 points, 10.0 rebounds and 5.5 assists per game for the Pistons. Andre Drummond had a monster opening week with a 24 points and 20 rebounds opening night and a 10 points and 13 rebounds follow-up effort against the Magic. However, Drummond is questionable for this game as he is battling flu. Drummond did not practice with the team on Monday.
Second leading scorer Reggie Jackson is putting up 18.5 points and 5 assists per game this season while backup point guard Ish Smith is averaging 13 points per night. Without Drummond, ZaZa Pachulia should get more minutes. The former Warriors big man is averaging 5.5 points and 7.5 rebounds per game for Detroit.
The Sixers lead the all-time series between these two teams at 215-155. In their last 10 head to head games, the series is even at 5 wins apiece. But the Sixers won all of their four meetings last season and three out of the last four in Detroit.
The series looks even in the last three years but really, the best way to gauge this matchup is using last season’s data. The current Sixers’ core had its best year last season and they look like they are even better this year with Embiid and Simmons improving their respective games during the summer. Don’t let their records mislead you. Philly is 2-1 while Detroit is 2-0 but remember that the Sixers have won two in a row since losing to Boston on opening night. Detroit’s two wins have come over Brooklyn and Chicago who are a combined 1-5 this season and who are not expected to make the playoffs this season.
Philadelphia is 19-6 SU in their last 25 games and 9-4 SU in their last 13 games on the road. Detroit is 9-3 SU in their last 12 games but are just 1-4 SU in their last 5 games versus the Sixers. However, the Pistons are 8-4 SU in their last 12 home games against the Sixers.
No question who the better team is here. But the main issue for Philly is Ben Simmons who is out of this game with a back injury. Fultz should do a decent job running the point while J.J Redick should take care of the scoring. Without Drummond, expect Embiid to have a big night dominating the paint. No offense meant, I thinks the Pistons are overrated at 2-0. We’re picking the Philadelphia 76ers to beat the Detroit Pistons on 10/23/18
The Sixers are 2-6 ATS in their last 8 games and 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games on the road. On the other hand, the Pistons are 10-5 ATS in their last 15 games, 7-3 ATS in their last 10 games at home but are just 1-4 ATS in their last five games against the Sixers. However, when playing in Detroit, the Pistons are 8-4 ATS in their last 12 games versus the Sixers.The Pistons are also 5-2 ATS in their last seven games after an ATS loss while the Sixers are 1-4 in their last 5 games against a team with a winning SU record.
Philly’s first win of the season was a blowout of the Bulls. Their next victory was a one point victory over the Magic. As for Detroit, they beat the Nets by three points and the Bulls by two points. So there’s a tendency for these teams to be part of close games this season. However, 9 out of the last 10 meetings between these teams were decided by double digits. Last season only one of four games between the Sixers and Pistons was decided by single digits. I think the Sixers win big in a high scoring affair here. Prediction: Sixers +1.5
The under is 5-2 in the last seven games played between Philadelphia and Detroit. The under is also 4-1 in the last five games between these teams in Detroit. The total has gone under in five out of the last six games of the Sixers when playing against teams with winning record. The total has also gone under in five out of their last seven games when their opponents score at least 100 points in their previous game. The under is also 16-6 in the last 22 games played by the Pistons against teams with winning records.
The last three meetings between these teams have a total combined score of at least 211 points. The Pistons rank 18th in the NBA in scoring at 110.5 points per game. The Sixers are right next to them at 110.0. Detroit gives up 108.0 points per game while Philadelphia allows 109.3 points per game. The Sixers will be without Ben Simmons but I think Redick makes up for the points. Prediction: Over 214.5
As of this writing, there’s not much difference between the moneyline odds and the other bets for this game. The reason probably is because Ben Simmons won’t be playing for the Sixers. But Philly has a lineup deep enough to beat this Detroit team on any given night. I think they will miss Simmons’ playmaking and passing but as to scoring points, I don’t think there will be a problem. There’s a good chance the Sixers win outright so I’m putting my bet on the moneyline of -125 for the Sixers.
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