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76ers @ Heat Predictions: Back Miami with Embiid uncertain

How will Jimmy Butler fare tonight against the 76ers?
How will Jimmy Butler fare tonight against the 76ers?
By Zachary Rainey

With few games left, Miami has plenty to play for, while Philly is a lock to finish as the No. 1 seed. Back Miami with Philly on cruise control

It’s no secret that the Miami Heat have been one of the league’s biggest disappointments this season after a trip to the NBA Finals last season.

Jimmy Butler has quietly, ironically, had one of the best and efficient seasons of his career. (If you know Butler’s Minnesota Timberwolves story, you’ll get the irony.)

Outside of Butler, not much has gone right for them. Tyler Herro’s stock was as high as it’s ever been after the NBA Playoffs last season, but Herro, nor Duncan Robinson have really lived up to the billing of being on a contender.

It also doesn’t help that Goran Dragic has started showing his age and is nowhere near the player he was in the bubble last season. Maybe he’s saving it and it comes out in the playoffs? But I’m not sure. Bam Adebayo is one of the only ones who’s stock has stayed going up following last season’s Finals run.

Tonight, they host the Philadelphia 76ers. Despite their troubles, Miami is currently a -2.5 point favorite, as it is apparent Joel Embiid might not play this one. The thing that troubles me is that Jimmy Butler is questionable for Miami as well.

Take out Embiid, Bam could have a field day. One of Philly’s best defenders in Matisse Thybulle is questionable as well. If neither of those players play for Philly, and Butler does play, I like Miami a lot in this matchup.

Despite the “disappointing” season, Miami is still the No. 5 seed and is tied in the loss column with the New York Knicks and sit just a half-game back of the Atlanta Hawks for the No. 4 seed. Those three teams are some of the only teams with something left to play for in the regular season.

I can’t say the same about Philly. Up 1.5 games on Brooklyn for the No. 1 seed, Philly gets to stay in the Sunshine State after this game with Miami, ending the season with a doubleheader against Orlando and will almost surely take care of business there.

That’s probably more of the reason Embiid isn’t playing than anything. I would monitor exactly who’s in and who’s out for this one, but if Butler plays, I like Miami -2.5.

As for a prop, I like Ben Simmons over 6.5 rebounds. There’s going to be plenty of rebounds left with the absence of Embiid, and I think Simmons picks up the slack here.

On PointsBet, his over sits at 7.5 at -110, but can get over 6.5 at -130 at 888Sport, BetRivers and Unibet.

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100% first deposit bonus up to $250
21+,T&Cs apply,Only 1x Wager
Up to $600 risk-free first bet
New customers,21+,T&Cs apply
Up to $500 in bet credits
Up to $500 in Bet Credits for new customers . Make a min $10 deposit,place bets to deposit value,once they are settled,matched amount in Bet Credits available to use. Bet Credits risk excluded from returns. T&Cs apply.
Up to $1000 in 4 risk free bets
New Customers only,T&Cs apply,21+
$10 registration bet & $300 deposit match
New Customers Only,21+,T&Cs apply
Bet $50,get $50 (100% deposit match)
21+,T&Cs apply,Please gamble responsibly
Up to $250 risk free bet
21+,NJ residents,T&Cs apply
2 x $10 free bets & $250 risk free bet
21+,New Customers,T&Cs apply
Get $100 in free bets when you bet $20
Min $25 stake,New Plyrs,21+,T&Cs apply