Saturday NBA Odds, Betting Picks & Predictions: 76ers vs. Pacers Preview (Aug. 1)
Getty Images. Pictured (L-R): Ben Simmons of the Philadelphia 76ers, Malcolm Brogdon of the Indiana Pacers.
- The 76ers are a sizable favorite over the Indiana Pacers on Saturday night, with the total at 213.5.
- Philly was terrible away from home this season, and the Pacers will be without a few key players on Saturday, either completely or because they're limited.
- Get Reed Wallach's full breakdown and pick for 76ers vs. Pacers below.
76ers vs. Pacers Betting Odds
|76ers odds||-5.5 [BET NOW]|
|Pacers odds||+5.5 [BET NOW]|
|Moneyline||-235/+185 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||213 [BET NOW]|
|Time||7 p.m. ET|
Odds via Parx, which offers new customers a 20% profit boost + $500 risk-free wager on their first bet AND your bets automatically sync to the Action app. Learn more about BetSync here.
The Philadelphia 76ers and Indiana Pacers enter the NBA restart tied for the fifth spot in the conference standings, so this opening weekend matchup will be pivotal in determining the East playoff bracket.
The Pacers took two of the first three meetings between the two clubs, but both wins came without Joel Embiid in the opposing lineup. “The Process” did play in Philadelphia’s lone win.
Philly opened as a six-point favorite with the total at 213. Let’s see where the betting value lies in Saturday’s matchup.
Sixers head coach Brett Brown has elected to shuffle the starting lineup, placing Ben Simmons at power forward and Shake Milton at point guard. Brown had seen enough of Philly’s floundering offense and wanted to maximize his talented roster’s potential. The Action Network’s Matt Moore dove into what Philly could look like moving forward by unlocking Simmons as a potential roll man and getting another shooter on the floor.
With the hope of getting Simmons in more advantageous situations — behind the arc potentially — Brown and the coaching staff are banking on this shift to jumpstart the Sixers offense.
The defense, on the contrary, was not a problem at all this season. The 76ers had a top-10 defense before the league shutdown and posted the second-best Defensive Rating in the bubble during the scrimmages (for what it’s worth).
While the lineup change is a refreshing surprise, the 76ers must be somewhat concerned with Embiid’s health. The center played just 15 minutes in the first scrimmage before sitting out the following two games with right calf tightness. Brown says he will be good to go for Saturday’s tilt, but one must wonder if he will be in full game shape just yet.
It’s tough to look at just three scrimmages and make too many assumptions, but I will note that the Sixers had the worst Offensive Rating of any team in Orlando, scoring 95 points per 100 possessions. Of course, Embiid only played in a sliver of action, but it’s not encouraging that role players did not take advantage of extra looks.
The big news for the Pacers is that the club is going to be without All-Star big man Domantas Sabonis, who left the bubble with plantar fasciitis. Sabonis has a +4.9 Net Rating differential for the Pacers this season, by far the best rating on the team.
We still don’t know the status of Victor Oladipo, who played in the scrimmages leading up to the restart but hasn’t committed to suiting up when the games count.
Returning from season-ending quad surgery last season, Oladipo has not been his old self just yet. He has shown flashes and gives the Pacers a strong playmaker alongside Malcolm Brogdon if he is able to play.
The Pacers are also a defensive-minded team that can make up for an underwhelming offense. Head coach Nate McMillan’s club posted the seventh-best Defensive Rating in the league this past season — one spot behind the Sixers — and while the loss of Sabonis hurts, the Pacers should be able to keep up on the defensive end.
According to PBPStats, Indy posted a nearly identical Defensive Rating with Sabonis on and off the floor. However, the offense took a tumble, going from more than 112 points per 100 possession to under 108 points per 100. That is the equivalent of going from the fifth-best offense to the 21st offense in the NBA.
Betting Analysis & Pick
With both teams still finding their footing and the potential of Embiid being limited, I’m going to bet the under in this one.
This total is not adjusted as much as others across the league to account for the long layoff and react to the new setting. Moore also highlighted this here, describing the unknown environment of the bubble and how scoring will be affected.
While some totals have dropped in the neighborhood of double digits heading into the bubble, this one is right around where it was when the teams met earlier this season. In the three matchups, the over/under closed at 207.5, 212.5 and 214.5, with the under cashing in the latter two games.
With a bevy of variables surrounding each team, the total is set around the same number and books are not making a concession. There are simply too many unknowns to trust the Sixers or Pacers right away. I see value in going below the total down to 211.5.
The Pick: Under 213.5 (-114)