ESB “GAME OF NIGHT” PREVIEW (SIXERS @ RAPTORS) (1-22)
ELITE SHADOW BETS “GAME OF THE NIGHT” PREVIEW: WED. JAN 22, 2020
TWO RED HOT TEAMS VYING FOR FIRST PLACE MEET TONIGHT IN TORONTO!
VEGAS ODDS: TORONTO RAPTORS (-7) vs. PHILLY SIXERS ~ TOTAL: (215 1/2)
TORONTO RAPTORS: (29-16) – HOME: (15-7) ~ PHILLY SIXERS: (29-16) – ROAD: (9-14)
WED NIGHT JAN 22, 2020 – ESPN TV – 7PM/PST
Tonight we will see the third meeting between the Sixers and the Raptors, with each holding serve so far on their Home courts. The Raptors won at Home on November 25th (101-96) and the Sixers prevailed on Dec. 8th at Home (110-104). Both games were tightly contested and close until the end. Both teams have had some ups and downs but both come into tonight’s contest with solid 4 game winning streaks.
Philly has not been a Road warrior this season, losing 14 of it’s 23 Road contests, but they come in tonight with back to back Road wins. This followed a bad run where the Sixers had lost 6 straight games on the Road. The Sixers 4 straight wins of late did come against the lowly Bulls and Knicks and the Nets twice. This will be a much tougher test as the Raptors finally have all their stars healthy and back in lineup. Toronto’s 4 game win streak is with wins by 5, 10, 29 and 9.
The Sixers will be without star Center Joel Embiid, who shockingly went (0-11) in the earlier loss at Toronto, his first scoreless game of his career. He did get 10 points in the Home win a few weeks later. They do have their other stud PG Ben Simmons coming off his best game of his career (34 pts-12 reb-12 assists – 5 steals – 2 blocks) and he will be asked to take over the scoring load again with Embiid out.
The Raptors lost their superstar leader in Kawhi Leonard but for most part, when healthy, have been very tough to beat. They struggled for a stretch losing games they may have won without 4 solid players out with different injuries. It’s hard to read from just the past games as they didn’t play with a full deck. They were once a very tough team to beat at Home. But of late at Home they 5 home losses against just two home wins over really bad teams says they are still a giant work in progress. They suffered losses by 1, 2, 1, 16 and 3 in those 5 Home defeats, unable to find someone to close out a close game. They do come into tonight with their now 6th man Normal Powell on a scoring binge of late. He has scored 20+ points in 5 straight games since returning from a shoulder injury. With all their top guys back they are once again a much deeper team and one that can mix and match well against this Sixers team missing Embiid.
These two teams are fighting tooth and nail to get the Atlantic Division top billing and right now just one game separates the two teams, sandwiched by Boston. These two teams are really dead even on paper and we’ve already seen two close games. Shame Embiid is out as we’d get our best read for later games if he was in the lineup, but this is the NBA anymore, as players are always seemingly banged up and missing games. Toronto must find a way to start to win these close games at Home. They do possess a 15-7 Home record which is very good, but you must know teams hate to lose Home games. Losing 4 of them in an 8 game Home stretch by 3 points or less doesn’t sit well with the Players and so you can fully expect the Raptors to be more focused in front of the Home folks and a different team with the injured guys all back in the lineup.
This is the marquee game of the night, but it could easily go two ways. To the wire and close like the first two meetings, or a Blowout at the Sixers simply aren’t the same team with Embiid out and asking them to win 3 straight Road games is asking a lot. Simmons has been assertive of late and a Beast dominating every team in his way. Al Horford is fine taking over at Center for Embiid. This match up is slight advantage to the Raptors, but in now way big enough of one to lay 7 points. This could become a very fast paced game and we would Lean to the OVER 215 1/2 in this contest on ESPN TV tonight.
Enjoy the game and may all your wagers be WINNING ones!
ELITE SHADOW BETS STAFF