Wizards vs. 76ers NBA Betting Odds & Picks: Expect Offenses to Shine in Wednesday Showdown (Dec. 23)
Andy Lyons/Getty Images. Pictured: Ben Simmons #25 of the Philadelphia 76ers.
- Russell Westbrook makes his debut for the Washington Wizards in Wednesday's NBA game against the Philadelphia 76ers.
- Philadelphia enters the contest as a 7.5-point favorite in the season opener for both teams.
- Joe Dellera breaks things down and explains why we should expect plenty of points below.
Wizards vs. 76ers Odds
|Wizards Odds||+7.5 [BET NOW]|
|76ers Odds||-7.5 [BET NOW]|
|Moneyline||+240 /-300 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||229.5 [BET NOW]|
|Time||7:30 p.m. ET|
The revamped Washington Wizards, led by Russell Westbrook and Bradley Beal, look to start off the season Wednesday with a victory against the Philadelphia 76ers.
The Sixers, who underwent quite the roster overhaul as well, attempt to reach their ceiling via the leadership of Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons.
Despite this being opening night, we won’t see the Wizards in full form, as second-year player Rui Hachimura will be sidelined for roughly three weeks with bilateral epidemic keratoconjunctivitis.
However, there is plenty to be excited about in Washington this season. The Wizards made a splash this offseason when they traded John Wall for Westbrook and added Deni Avdija with the ninth overall pick in the NBA draft.
Could this be enough to push Washington over the hump? Only time will tell.
Last season, the Wizards were 40-31-1 to the over, according to Bet Labs. They played the fifth fastest in the league with a 103.39 Pace, per NBA Advanced Stats. (For those who aren’t familiar with the metric, Pace is the number of possessions per 48 minutes for a team or player.)
The Wizards might get even better in that statistic, due to the fact Westbrook is notorious for pushing the tempo. Last season, the Houston Rockets had a Pace of 107.33 when he was on the court. When he was on the bench, that number dipped all the way to 103.04.
Throughout his career, Westbrook’s teams have played faster, seen more possessions and generally put together a better offensive rating when he was on the hardwood.
So, when you pair him with Beal — one of the best scorers in the NBA — and the rising talent of Avdija, this really is a recipe for plenty of points.
The Sixers are now run by team president Daryl Morey, who has done an incredible job reshaping this roster in such a short time. The 76ers acquired much needed shooting help in the form of Danny Green and Seth Curry. Morey was also able to shed Al Horford’s albatross of a contract, pick up young guard Tyrese Maxey with the 21st overall pick and acquire Dwight Howard as a free-agent.
Last season the, Sixers were 38-33-1 to the over, according to Bet Labs. They were an above-average team going over the number, despite being 20th in Pace (99.59). This is a trend that we saw last season: In games where the home team’s Pace was between 95 and 101, the over was 194-149-5, returning a $100 bettor a 10.3% ROI.
Now, the 76ers have added two of the most efficient scorers in the NBA in Green and Curry. In fact, Curry ranked in the 99th percentile last season with 130.3 points per 100 shot attempts (PSA). Green had a down year last season, he was in the 97th percentile at 126.9 PSA during the 2018-19 season in Toronto.
Both of these marks are better than any other player the Sixers rostered last season, according to Cleaning the Glass. This level of efficiency is something Philadelphia desperately needed.
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When these teams played each other last season, the over was just 1-2, with an average of 223.3 points scored against an average total of 229.2 points.
However, Beal did not play in the final game of the season, which also went under the number. His absence was impossible for the Wizards to overcome, largely due to the fact their offense was nearly nine points better with him on the court than off.
Looking at this matchup, we add in Westbrook to push the pace and two of the most efficient scorers per shot attempt in Curry and Green. That said, I think this total is too low, so I am backing the over and not looking back.
Pick: Over 229.5 points (play up to 231 points)