USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Joel Embiid and Giannis Antetokounmpo
Betting odds: Philadelphia 76ers at Milwaukee Bucks
- Spread: Bucks -6
- Over/Under: 223.5
- Time: 9:30 p.m. ET
- TV channel: ESPN
>> All odds as of 11:30 a.m. ET. Download The Action Network App to get real-time NBA odds and track your bets
Three of the East’s biggest up-and-coming stars — Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid and Giannis Antetokounmpo — are set to face off in a prime-time affair.
Well, at least we’ll hope it’s all three, as Simmons missed Tuesday’s overtime loss to the Pistons with a tight lower back. What’s his status tonight? And how would his absence affect this game? Our analysts are here to discuss.
Injury to Watch: Ben Simmons
Simmons should be considered questionable tonight. The 76ers are playing on the second leg of a road back-to-back, and they played into overtime in last night’s loss, during which Robert Covington played 44 minutes, Joel Embiid played 38 and Dario Saric went 37.
Those guys, plus JJ Redick and T.J. McConnell — who played more than 30 minutes, as well — could be somewhat intriguing in DFS if Simmons is out, although playing on a road B2B isn’t an ideal against an improved Milwuakee squad that ranks sixth in efficiency so far this season.
Embiid has averaged an impressive 1.48 DraftKings points per minute over the past year with Simmons off the floor.
Based on our NBA power ratings, we have Simmons worth about 3.5 points to the spread. Factoring in home-court advantage (but not the back-to-back or overtime last night), we have this as Bucks -1.5 with Simmons and -5 without him. — Bryan Mears