NBA Game Preview - 76ers v Wizards

 
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107
Final 1 2 3 4 Tot
Philadelphia 26 28 23 30 107
Washington 20 27 27 24 98
98
1:00 PM PT2:00 PM MT3:00 PM CT4:00 PM ET20:00 GMT4:00 1:00 PM MST3:00 PM EST0:00 UAE (+1)22:0016:00 ET3:00 PM CT19:00 , August 5, 2020
ESPN Wide World of Sports Arena, Reunion, Florida

Sixers look to exploit struggling Wizards

According to STATS
According to STATS

Philadelphia 76ers at Washington Wizards

  1. The 76ers and Wizards split their first two meetings this season, with each team winning at home. The last six meetings have been split three wins apiece, but only one of the six games has been decided by fewer than 13 points (119-113 Wizards win on December 5, 2019).
  2. Philadelphia beat the Spurs, 132-130 on Monday, evening its record in the bubble at 1-1. The Sixers have scored at least 114 points in seven of their last eight games, averaging 121.0 points per game in that time. Philadelphia is only 4-4 in those games as they've allowed 118.9 points per game.
  3. The Wizards are winless in their first three games in the bubble after a 111-100 defeat to the Pacers on Monday. That loss dropped Washington to 1-8 against teams over .500 since January 10; only the Bulls (1-9) have a worse record against teams with winning records in that time.
  4. Joel Embiid has averaged 34.0 points and 15.0 rebounds in his first two games in the bubble, going to the foul line 12 times in each game. Embiid has been to the line at least 12 times in seven of his last nine games as the Sixers have gone 6-1 in the seven games in which he took 12 or more foul shots.
  5. Thomas Bryant followed up a 30-point game against Brooklyn on Sunday with 20 more points on Monday against Indiana. The 50 combined points are the most Bryant has ever scored in a two-game window, seven more than any other two-game span in his career.
  6. The Wizards have allowed opponents to shoot 59.4 percent in the paint this season, second highest in the NBA, while the 76ers have shot 57.4 percent in the paint, tied for sixth highest in the league. Philadelphia has shot 63.0 percent (51-for-81) in its two games against Washington this season.

The Philadelphia 76ers hope to continue to take advantage of a soft spot in their schedule when they take on the Washington Wizards in the NBA bubble near Orlando on Wednesday afternoon.

After suffering a loss to Indiana in their Florida opener that dropped them behind the Pacers in the race for the fifth seed in the Eastern Conference, the 76ers (40-27) responded with a 132-130 victory over the San Antonio Spurs on Monday.

That game began a stretch in which the 76ers play five consecutive games against teams currently seeded seventh or lower in their respective conference. The Wizards (24-43) have the worst record among all teams in Orlando.

All told, the 76ers were the beneficiary of landing the second-easiest schedule following the coronavirus break, with their eight opponents having a cumulative .506 winning percentage at the time. Only the New Orleans Pelicans (.495) of the Western Conference were given a smoother road to the postseason.

That's not to say there was anything easy about Philadelphia's win over the Spurs on Monday. They needed all of Joel Embiid's 27 points and Shake Milton's 3-pointer in the final seconds to pull out the win.

Afterward, 76ers coach Brett Brown blasted his team's defensive effort.

"I think it stinks," he told reporters. "It's not anything that we are, or believe in, or talk about. We were very lucky to win."

The 76ers have allowed 127 and 130 points in their two games at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex. They were scorched to the tune of 50.5-percent shooting (41.2 percent on 3-pointers) in the loss to Indiana, before the Spurs put up similar numbers (49.5 percent overall, 46.2 percent on threes) on Monday.

Philadelphia has countered with nearly equal firepower, led by Embiid, who has averaged 34 points and 15 rebounds in the two games. Tobias Harris has chipped in with an average of 27.5 points per contest.

In the Wizards, the 76ers will see a team on the verge of playoff elimination, one that seems to be leaking oil offensively in the absence of John Wall, Bradley Beal and Davis Bertans.

Washington has gone 0-3 in Florida as their scoring output has dropped from 112 against Phoenix to 110 against Brooklyn to 100 in an 11-point loss to Indiana on Monday.

Wizards coach Scott Brooks assured after the Indiana game that his team is not about to give up, even though the schedule gets tougher. Washington still has Milwaukee and Boston looming.

"I like this group because they care. I like this group because they take losses hard," Brooks told reporters. "We're trying, we're fighting; we're just not getting rewarded yet. But we're going to keep doing it. We've got five more games; we're going to play the same exact way."

Big man Thomas Bryant has led the way for the Wizards in Florida, averaging 20 points and 10.3 rebounds. He has recorded double-doubles in his last two games.

The clubs split two earlier games this season, with each winning at home.

The Wizards overcame a 26-point, 21-rebound effort by Embiid to win 119-113 in December behind Beal's 26 points. He's since been lost to a shoulder injury.

The 76ers won the rematch 16 days later, 125-108, with Embiid recording another double-double (21 points, 13 rebounds).

--Field Level Media

Updated August 4, 2020

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