• Philadelphia 76ers vs. Utah Jazz
• Saturday, January 6 at 10 PM ET
• Wells Farco Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
While we’ve seen some teams disappoint this season in the NBA, that 100 percent can’t be said about the Philadelphia 76ers thus far in 2023. Philly entered the season with high expectations and they’re looking great thus far. As of this writing, the Eastern Conference powerhouse holds a 23-10 record, sitting with the No. 3 seed. Later this week, the 76ers are favored to beat the Jazz at home on Saturday night.
Utah has been going through a bit of a rough patch, as the Western Conference side is 16-19 on the year. Utah went through a tough contest on Wednesday night, going to overtime with the Detroit Pistons. The Pistons are the worst team in the NBA, yet they almost managed to take down Utah in a showdown that proved to be a thriller. Now, people think Utah can try and top Philly on the road?
|Philly vs. Utah odds
|76ers to win
|Jazz to win
|Over 195 points
|Under 195 points
The 76ers have been sharp on both ends of the floor, impressing everyone with their strong play both on offense and defense. The 76ers have tremendous shooters, but their intensity on the defensive end is something that has a lot of people talking. Going up against Utah, the Philly defense will hope to provide the Utah offense with a lot of issues. Something tells us that’s exactly what’s going to happen.
According to the best-rated sportsbooks, which includes the reliable Bovada review, the 76ers hold -110 NBA betting odds to take down the Jazz. Meanwhile for Utah, they’ve been set at +125, which isn’t a surprise at all. Nick Nurse is doing a great job as head coach of Philly and another strong showing should be on the way for him against Utah. With all of that said, we’re going with the 76ers as our pick to come out on top over Utah in this one.
reverse, reverse ⏪⏪
— Philadelphia 76ers (@sixers) January 3, 2024
Joel Embiid is the slight favorite to win NBA MVP this season
With the way he’s been playing in 2023-24, it’s not a surprise at all that Joel Embiid is the slight favorite to win NBA MVP this season. Embiid is easily one of the best big men in the game. He’s got great touch both inside of the paint and when he’s away from the basket. Because of what he can get done on both ends of the floor, Embiid has become a fan favorite across the USA – and the world for that matter.
On the season, Embiid is averaging 34.8 points and 11.8 rebounds per game. These are freakish numbers and Embiid is only getting started. Not only that, but Embiid does a great job passing the ball as well. In addition to his impressive points and rebounds per night, he’s also posting 6.2 assists per contest. That’s a fantastic number for someone of Embiid’s size to post. Philly is expecting more of the same from Embiid for the rest of the campaign.
NBA All-Star voting results for the first fan returns for the Sixers
Joel Embiid (2nd in front-court) at 1,844,025 votes
Tyrese Maxey (5th in back-court) at 480,062 votes
Philadelphia is on track to have two all-stars this season👀 pic.twitter.com/YAwilbpkRZ
— Jacob Moreno (@Jacobmorenonba) January 4, 2024
“If he finishes this season the way he’s playing now, it would be the greatest season of a single player that’s ever played basketball,” teammate Pat Beverly said of how Embiid is playing. “That doesn’t make you the best big man in the league. That makes you the best (expletive) in the world. Joel, he is in a world of his own. I think it’s a toggle between him and Michael Jordan. He is the most dominant player in basketball right now and it’s not even close.”
According to the oddsmakers, Embiid holds +200 betting odds to win NBA MVP. Right behind him at +250 is Denver’s Nikola Jokic. Jokic himself is one of the best players in the NBA and he played a big role in the Denver Nuggets winning the NBA Finals last season. Jokic would love to bring home the MVP honor, but something tells us Embiid will be the one to capture the honor. It’s early, but we’re going with Embiid as our pick to win MVP.
The 76ers are hoping to make NBA Finals noise this year
Looking ahead to the postseason, the 76ers are hoping to make NBA Finals noise this year. The squad was hoping to reach the Finals in recent seasons, but things just didn’t go according to plan following the blockbuster trade to land James Harden. Now, Harden is no longer in Philly, as he’s currently a star playmaker for the Los Angeles Clippers. Despite Harden being out of town, the 76ers are still a threat in the NBA and they could end up going on a deep postseason run. It’ll be on Embiid to play a role.
It’s not only Embiid who is having a strong season for the 76ers, though. In addition to Embiid, Tyrese Maxey and Tobias Harris are also averaging more than 17 points per contest. This team is building a lot of chemistry, but more will be needed as we get close to the All-Star break. Right now, the 76ers hold +1300 NBA Finals betting odds. If they can keep on winning, however, then those odds should go up. Plenty of people are focusing on the Celtics and Nuggets, but don’t sleep on Philly this year.