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NBA Wednesday: Raptors and 76ers on ESPN

Philadelphia 76ers NBA Basketball

Raptors Sewed up 2nd Seed; 76ers Still Battling

Will the Toronto Raptors and Philadelphia 76ers meet again in the Eastern Conference playoffs? They produced one of the most memorable postseason moments in NBA history last May.

TIME: 6:30 p.m. ET. TV: ESPN; LINE: Toronto -6.5: TOTAL: 220

The staggering Philadelphia 76ers face the unenviable task of dealing with the second half of a back-to-back Wednesday Night. They meet the Toronto Raptors in the NBA bubble on Wednesday night.

That would create a first-round playoff pairing with third-seeded Boston.

76ers Need to Get Healthy and Find Rhythm

The 76ers prioritized long-term health when they sat regulars Joel Embiid, Tobias Harris, Al Horford and Josh Richardson in a 130-117 loss to Phoenix on Tuesday afternoon.

It’s possible all four will sit again Wednesday, and perhaps even in Friday’s regular-season finale against Houston. It is virtually assuring the 76ers (42-29) will land in the sixth position in the final Eastern Conference standings. Ben Simmons is already out for the season following knee surgery.

Moving out of that matchup remains a possibility for Philadelphia. They have won three of six in Florida. They are two games behind fourth-seeded Miami (44-27) and one back of fifth-seeded Indiana (43-28).

Moving from sixth to fifth in the Eastern race would mean facing either the Heat or Pacers in the first round.

Miami and Indiana, go head-to-head on Friday, also play Wednesday. The Heat will take on Oklahoma City. The Pacers square off with Houston.

The 76ers’ biggest concern is Embiid. He suffered an ankle injury Sunday against Portland and they are hoping it is not too serious.

76ers coach Brett Brown indicated before Tuesday’s game that he was hopeful of getting Embiid back by Friday’s regular-season finale. Brown appeared to indicate that Tuesday and Wednesday were out of the question.

Embiid sat Tuesday.

“I do expect him to,” Brown told the media of a possible Friday return. “That’s just one man’s opinion. I do believe it would be good for him to play before the playoffs begin.”

The 76ers and Raptors have met three times previously with an obvious conclusion: Even a little Embiid is better than none at all.

The All-Star center was held scoreless once and sat out on a second occasion when Philadelphia lost twice at Toronto.

He had only 10 points and eight rebounds in the lone home matchup, but it was enough to help get the 76ers over the top in a 110-104 win in December.

Fred VanVleet contributed 24 and 22 points to the Toronto home wins.

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Raptors are Red Hot

The Raptors (51-19) have won five of six since the restart to lock down the No. 2 seed in the East. They have a first-round matchup with seventh-seeded Brooklyn.

The Raptors rested some of their key players in a 114-106 win over the top team in the East, Milwaukee. Chris Boucher paced Toronto with 25 points in 29 minutes off the bench.

If Wednesday’s game turns into another duel of backups, Boucher noted he and his teammates are ready.

“Everybody on this team is doing the same thing,” he noted to reporters after Monday’s win. “Just being ready, and when the opportunity is there … play hard and show what you’re capable of doing.”

The Raptors close out bubble play Friday against Denver.

The Dart Throw: Raptors 126, 76ers 115

Raptors vs. 76ers Betting Odds & Trends

Philadelphia 76ers
Philadelphia is 1-5 ATS in its last 6 games
The total has gone OVER in 10 of Philadelphia’s last 12 games
Philadelphia is 6-2 ATS in its last 8 games at home
Philadelphia is 17-1 SU in its last 18 games at home
The total has gone OVER in 6 of Philadelphia’s last 7 games at home
Philadelphia is 7-18 SU in its last 25 games when playing Toronto
The total has gone UNDER in 8 of Philadelphia’s last 11 games when playing Toronto
Philadelphia is 5-2 ATS in its last 7 games when playing at home against Toronto
Philadelphia is 5-2 SU in its last 7 games when playing at home against Toronto
Toronto Raptors
Toronto is 6-1 ATS in its last 7 games
Toronto is 9-1 SU in its last 10 games
The total has gone UNDER in 6 of Toronto’s last 7 games
Toronto is 4-0-1 ATS in its last 5 games on the road
Toronto is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games on the road
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Toronto’s last 5 games on the road
Toronto is 18-7 SU in its last 25 games when playing Philadelphia
The total has gone UNDER in 8 of Toronto’s last 11 games when playing Philadelphia
Toronto is 2-5 ATS in its last 7 games when playing on the road against Philadelphia
Toronto is 2-5 SU in its last 7 games when playing on the road against Philadelphia

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brian c
August 15, 2020 10:41 am

6th is still okay. But its going to be a very busy playoff season, so its good that they gave their main guys a short break.

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