A 76ers Week In Review + Will Lebron Win The MVP Award This Year?

A 76ers Week In Review + Will Lebron Win The MVP Award This Year?

76ers Atlantic Division Betting

Welcome back to our weekly Sixers coverage. Last week, we re-capped the wild finish on the homestead before the ASG, and gave out a couple of props for All Star weekend. If you took our advice and bet Steph Curry +200 to win the three-point contest, congratulations on a relatively easy win. Due to injuries, no Sixers were able to play in the All-Star game.

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76ers week in review

Thursday night was fun for Sixers fans. Without Ben Simmons or Joel Embiid, the Sixers still managed to crush the Chicago Bulls. It only further reinforced what we’ve said before about this Sixers team. They are a deep team with plenty of options both offensively and defensively. Their problem has just been their shooters aren’t that reliable, for a team who occasionally clogs the lane and draws attention inside.

However, in a game like Thursday’s, the Sixers were able to use a nine-man rotation, play solid defense, and dominate on the glass. Even with a poor shooting performance from outside (30%), the Sixers made up for it in every other area. The Sixers forced 19 turnovers and only committed 11.

One of the advantages of having a dynamic passer like Ben Simmons on the floor is how he can open up the floor and provide scoring chances for everyone around them. However, one disadvantage of having a player like Simmons is the frequency at which they turn the ball over. Of course, you take the good and the bad with guys like Simmons, Morant, and Doncic, because the good outweighs the bad.

For the Sixers on Thursday, ball movement and playmaking was not an issue, even with Simmons and Embiid out. Matisse Thybulle was incredible, going 5-5 (3-3 from deep) with four rebounds and five steals. The rest of the Sixers were a combined 7-30 from three, but it didn’t matter. Dwight Howard came off the bench and racked up 12 boards and 18 points in 24 minutes and the Sixers rolled.

Embiid out for two weeks

On Friday, one of the potential doomsday scenarios we discussed a few weeks back, came to fruition. Midway through the third quarter, Embiid threw down a dunk — with the Sixers comfortably ahead — and came down awkwardly on his knee. To be more specific, he hyperextended his knee. The MRI results are back, and it looks like Embiid avoided a major injury and should only miss a couple of weeks. Hey, at least it happened now and not during the playoffs.

As for the game itself, the Sixers easily handled the Wizards, 127-101. Despite the injury in the third, Embiid still finished as the top scorer (23 points). The expected advantage on the glass was more than enough to carry the Sixers (+17 in rebounding). Philadelphia shot the ball incredibly well (54% from the field and 52% from three). It also helps to go a perfect 18-18 from the line.

With the win Friday, the Sixers still hold a slim lead in the East, but the prospect of MVP-level Embiid being out the next few weeks is worrisome. At the very least, the Sixers will be able to get some heavier usage out of Dwight Howard, and we may see some smaller rotations during stretches (hopefully with more PT for Tyrese Maxey and Matisse Thybulle).

We have to be impressed with what we’ve seen from Thybulle at this point. With Simmons returning soon, I think the Sixers have to find a way to keep him heavily involved.

Next up for the Sixers is a nice four-game stretch. The Sixers will face the Spurs Sunday, the Knicks Tuesday, the Bucks Wednesday, and the Kings next Saturday.

Futures Awards Pick

Lebron James +150 to win MVP

The Pro-Lebron MVP press tour has been an annoying and nauseating narrative we’ve heard throughout the season. Everything from “How has he not won MVP in eight years” to “He’s doing all this at age 36” is all you need to hear.

With Embiid set to miss two weeks, he’s going to have to come back and have an insane finish to end the season. Even with that, Lebron is the biggest icon in basketball. People have become obsessed with him at an unhealthy rate, and it’s culminated into his entire following being absolutely convinced Lebron has been hosed out of at least three more MVP awards.

Even though it’s a silly narrative, people believe it. Statistically, Jokic should be the frontrunner for the MVP right now. However, the Nuggets are going to have to go on a big streak for Jokic to draw even with Lebron. Even then, the press tour is in full effect.