Raptors vs. 76ers Game 3 Betting Preview: Will Toronto Regain Home Court?

Raptors vs. 76ers Game 3 Betting Preview: Will Toronto Regain Home Court? article feature image

Photo credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Kawhi Leonard and Ben Simmons

Game 3 Betting Odds: Toronto Raptors at Philadelphia 76ers

  • Spread: Raptors -1
  • Over/Under: 216.5
  • Time: 8 p.m. ET
  • TV Channel: ESPN
  • Series Score: Tied 1-1

>> All odds as of Wednesday night. Download The Action Network App to get real-time odds and live win probabilities on your bets.

The Sixers surprised in Game 2, not only covering the 6.5-point spread but winning outright on the road. Now they’re underdogs yet again at home.

Is that right? Our analysts dive in.

Betting Trends to Know

The Raptors lost Game 2 as 7.5-point favorites. Don’t overreact, though: Since 2005, teams that lost their previous playoff game as a favorite have gone 176-134-10 (57%) against the spread in the next game.John Ewing

Since 2005, teams have struggled ATS in the playoffs after winning straight-up as an underdog in their previous game, going 176-204-12 ATS (46.3%), including 80-99-4 ATS (44.7%) when those teams play at home in their next game.

The Sixers this season have particularly struggled in this spot, going 3-7 ATS after a straight-up win as an underdog, failing to cover by 5.9 points per game. After a straight-up win this season, the Sixers are 22-33 ATS (40%), making them the least profitable team ATS in that spot. Evan Abrams

In Game 2, both the Sixers and Raptors struggled from the field, shooting 40% or less. Since 2005, when two teams in a playoff series (Games 2-7) both shoot 40% from the field or less, the over is 23-18-1 (56.1%) in the next game. In those 42 instances, the over is cashing by 5.6 points per game. Abrams

Locky: How I’m Betting Game 3

I was really happy to read the trends above. It can be easy to see the final score and shooting numbers in Game 2 and think, “well, both these teams are now accustomed to one another, so it’s going to be a grind now.”

But that’s really not what happened.

The Raptors had 29 field goal attempts in Game 2 that were classified as “wide open” — a defender six-plus feet away — and they shot a completely abysmal 31% on those (9-for-29). So did Philly’s defense really “show up” at all, or was it the exact same scheme and the Raptors just missed all the shots they made in Game 1? Seems a lot more like the latter, right?

Pascal Siakam still hasn’t really been accounted for by Philly in a meaningful way; he just missed all the open shots he made in Game 1, same as the rest of the team. I still think Toronto presents a number of really bad matchups for the Sixers, and an ‘average’ Raptors performance should see them win this game, even on the road.

As for the total, if Toronto is going to consistently get that many open looks, then the pace numbers are there for this to go over. I also think with the Sixers at home, not only will the team’s role players and bench (no matter how thin) be more comfortable shooting, but they’ll also be more comfortable pushing the pace with confidence — something they did very well against the Nets.

Considering their defensive deficiencies, though, and lack of any tangible adjustments that can affect those deficiencies, all of that adds up to a high-scoring Raptors win.

I’ll take Toronto -1 and the over of 216.5. You’re getting a total number 3.5 points lower than the close in the last game, and I’m not sure there is enough evidence of meaningful adjustments to rationalize that. Ken Barkley

Mears: Why I’m on the Raptors

A lot was made after Game 2 about Ben Simmons’ defense on Kawhi Leonard. And that’s fair: It was largely very good. This, for example, was excellent, despite the made shot:

Simmons was clearly their best defender on him in Game 1…

And thus was given the assignment more in Game 2. And still, Kawhi finished with 35 points on 24 shots. He’s maybe the best isolation scorer in the world; he’s largely going to be successful across 48 minutes. Of course, slowing him down even somewhat is helpful, but honestly that’s not really the recipe for beating the Raptors.

The best way is to limit the other guys, and Philly really did that, holding literally every other Raptor below 50% shooting.

  • Pascal Siakam: 9-for-25
  • Kyle Lowry: 7-for-17
  • Danny Green: 1-for-8
  • Marc Gasol: 1-for-6
  • Serge Ibaka: 1-for-5
  • Norman Powell: 1-for-3
  • Fred VanVleet: 0-for-2
  • Jodie Meeks: 0-for-1

As a result, the Raptors posted a miserable 93.7 Offensive Rating (seventh percentile) in Game 2, along with a 41.8% eFG% mark (fourth percentile).

That said, Locky is exactly right about missing wide-open shots. For reference, the Jazz ranked first in the league this season with 26.8% of their shots from 10-plus feet away being classified as wide open. In Game 2, the Raptors had 29.7% such possessions — above the league-best regular-season mark — but obviously just missed a ton of them.

Some examples in just the first few minutes of the game:

Marc Gasol, a good 3-pointer shooter for a big man…

Pascal Siakam, who is shooting nearly 37% from deep this year…

Kyle Lowry, who’s about at that same mark for his career…

Or Danny Green, one of the best 3-point shooters in the league, wide open from the corner.

You get the point. The Raptors were so incredibly unlucky, and they still lost by only five points. Give me the Raps in Game 3 on the road. Bryan Mears

Editor’s note: The opinions on this game are from the individual writers and are based on their research, analysis and perspective. They are independent of, and may not always match with, the algorithm-driven Best Bets from Sports Insights.