Philadelphia 76ers (4-0) vs. Portland Trail Blazers (3-2)
NBA Basketball: Saturday November 2nd, 2019 (Moda Center)
Line and Odds: Philadelphia (+1.5) vs. Portland (-1.5) O/U: 223
Money Line: Philadelphia (-125) vs. Portland (+105)
Portland Trail Blazers is finally back home, will face Embiid-less Sixers
Free NBA Playoff Picks: Philadelphia 76ers vs. Portland Trail Blazers
The Portland Trail Blazers have proved they can win on the road. Now they’re hoping to get their first home victory.
The next opportunity comes Saturday night against the undefeated but shorthanded Philadelphia 76ers.
Philadelphia will be without center Joel Embiid, who will begin serving a two-game suspension for his role in an on-court skirmish with Minnesota’s Karl-Anthony Towns on Wednesday night. Towns also was suspended.
Saturday’s game will be only the second at home for Portland, which lost 108-100 to the Denver Nuggets on opening night.
The Blazers then went on the road and took three of four, defeating Sacramento, Dallas and Oklahoma City but losing 113-110 at San Antonio.
Philadelphia has defeated Boston, Detroit, Atlanta and Minnesota, going 2-0 both home and away, to take the early lead in the Atlantic Division and Eastern Conference. It’s the only undefeated team left in the league.
Embiid has averaged 23.3 points and 10.3 rebounds in what the team is proclaiming as “bully ball defense” and “smash-mouth offense” as it tries to set a tone with physicality and defense.
Sixers coach Brett Brown initially said the tussle involving Embiid didn’t seem like it would warrant a suspension.
Four other Philadelphia players are scoring in double figures: small forward Tobias Harris (18.8 points per game), point guard Ben Simmons (16.5), power forward Al Horford (14.0) and shooting guard Josh Richardson (13.3). Harris and Horford each are averaging 9.0 rebounds, and Simmons leads the team in assists (8.0) and steals (2.8).
Horford likely will shift to center in Embiid’s absence, with Harris able to play power forward and rookie Matisse Thybulle, who has impressed defensively, an option at small forward.
Another key for the Sixers on Wednesday was the scoring of reserve swing man Furkan Korkmaz, who had 17 points and three 3-pointers in replacing Shake Milton (knee) in the rotation.
The Blazers’ most recent outing also was Wednesday, when a typical late flurry by guard Damian Lillard lifted Portland past Oklahoma City 102-99.
Lillard got hot in the fourth quarter, hitting three 3-pointers in a span of less than 90 seconds to turn the tide in Portland’s favor. He finished with 23 points and 13 assists, and he set up teammates such as small forward Rodney Hood for big baskets down the stretch.
The game also will mark the return of Portland native Ime Udoka, 42, who once played for Portland State and the Blazers. He’s now Philly’s lead assistant coach.
It’ll be the start of a four-game trip that will also take the 76ers to Phoenix on Monday, Utah on Wednesday and Denver on Friday.
The Blazers will visit Golden State on Monday, with the Warriors having just lost guard Stephen Curry to a broken left hand.
Cover the Spread 365 Trends
Philadelphia are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games.
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Philadelphia’s last 5 games.
Philadelphia are 5-1 SU in their last 6 games.
Philadelphia are 1-4 SU in their last 5 games against Portland.
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Philadelphia’s last 7 games on the road.
Portland Trail Blazers
Portland are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games.
Portland are 3-6 SU in their last 9 games.
Portland are 1-4 SU in their last 5 games at home.
Portland are 5-0 SU in their last 5 games when playing at home against Philadelphia.
Portland are 13-3-1 ATS in their last 17 games against an opponent in the Eastern conference.
NBA Scores Portland Trail Blazers Vs. Philadelphia 76ers
Philadelphia 76ers will be without Joel Embiid for two games. This is a great opportunity for Ben Simmons to showcase his 3-pointers during the game. Still Portland has too much fire power and will to the win this game. Damian Lillard will have a big night.
My Pick: Portland Trail Blazers (-1.5)