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Philadelphia 76ers vs Brooklyn Nets NBA Playoff Odds, Picks & Predictions

Mark Strotman for Bookies.com

Mark Strotman  | 5 mins

Philadelphia 76ers vs Brooklyn Nets NBA Playoff Odds, Picks & Predictions

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This isn’t exactly the personnel we had in mind when we envisioned a Sixers-Nets playoff matchup back in October. The Sixers are relatively the same, but the Nets dealt both Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving in a quasi-rebuilding move while still maintaining their playoff positioning. 

Ben Simmons won’t play in this one, unfortunately, but we will get a group of young gunners in Brooklyn against the likely NBA MVP in Joel Embiid. Philadelphia is a heavy favorite on sports betting apps for good reason, but Brooklyn has the ability to put up 120 in the blink of an eye—so don’t expect Mikal Bridges and Co. to just roll over.

We can throw a majority of Brooklyn’s yearlong stats out the window because of the trades—and it also makes this a different 3 vs. 6 matchup than we’re used to (playoff teams usually don’t have massive sell-offs in February). Brooklyn was just 11-13 after the trades—a 37-win pace that would have had them miss the Play-In Tournament by a full four games.

The Sixers, meanwhile, were fifth in net rating after the All-Star break and got MVP play from Embiid, who averaged a gaudy 34.0 points on 59% shooting along with 9.6 rebounds, 4.5 assists, and 1.9 blocks. Oh, and Philadelphia was 12-5 in that span while locking up the No. 3 seed.

76ers vs. Nets Game 1 Odds

76ers vs. Nets betting tips

The Nets offense needs to get hot—and stay hot

If you’re betting on the Nets on New York betting apps, you’re betting on Brooklyn to find something on offense. After trading away Irving and Durant, they fell off a cliff from an efficiency standpoint. In 28 games after the break, Brooklyn’s 113.1 offensive efficiency was 23rd in the NBA—and the seven teams below them are all in the Lottery. 

They had a few hot outings in March, but it’ll need to be a constant to keep pace with Philly’s No. 3 offensive unit. Mikal Bridges (26.1 points in 27 games with Brooklyn) will have to average in the 30s.

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The Sixers’ best shot at a title

James Harden has the NBA title monkey on his back, and Joel Embiid has come up short—whether injuries or being outplayed—the last few seasons. Title windows don’t stay open forever, and Philadelphia knows this is likely its best shot at a title. Does that mean they come out guns blazing and put away the youthful Nets early? 

Embiid’s Sixers are 8-3 SU in the first round of the playoffs over the last two seasons. They tend to put the foot on the gas early as favorites. It tracks, too, given that they were 33-23-1 ATS as favorites on NBA betting sites this season—a 59% clip that was third best in the NBA behind Detroit (2-1) and Milwaukee (39-22-5).

Beware of Nets trends

Brooklyn underwent massive change when they traded two Hall of Famers (great analysis, we know). But it can’t be overstated how bettors should lean away from Brooklyn trends because of it. Consider that Brooklyn on the season was 12th in offensive efficiency—but just 24th after the trades. 

RELATED: Kyrie Irving Next Team Odds

One trend that did maintain: Unders. Brooklyn went under on 44 of 82 games this season (the second most in the NBA), and it sustained that after the trades (15-12 hitting the under). Two games against the Sixers with Kyrie and KD went over, while the only time these teams played post-trades was a 101-98 Sixers victory that went under by 24 points.

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76ers vs. Nets Best Bets

Bridges' blossoming is one of the best stories of the year. It won’t be nearly enough against a Sixers team with title aspirations. Philadelphia has been dominant since the beginning of the season, and Embiid’s MVP play won’t slow down with the spotlight on him.

One of the Sixers’ most impressive feats this season has been their consistency: They were 47-34-1 ATS (second best mark), and that included 24-16-1 at home (fourth best mark) and 23-18 on the road (sixth best mark). It’s worth noting they were 13-8 (62%) as a road favorite, while the Nets were just 7-8 ATS as a home underdog, including 3-5 after the trade.

What does it add up to? A Sixers sweep. Though a gentleman’s sweep has slightly better odds, we think Embiid, Harden, and Doc Rivers’ group are on a mission. Brooklyn has had more drama than a season of the Bachelor, and they’ll be more than happy to head to Cancun for a breather and a rest heading into next season. Philadelphia in four. Book it.

Best Bet: Sixers In Four Games At +250 with BetMGM

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About the Author

Mark Strotman for Bookies.com
Mark Strotman
Mark is a veteran sports betting journalist who has covered the Bulls and the NBA since 2012. His work has appeared on ESPN.com, FoxSports.com, The Chicago Tribune and Yahoo Sports. He regularly provides NBA betting picks, as well as in-depth sportsbook reviews and the latest promo codes for all the major sports gambling operators, including Caesars Sportsbook, BetMGM, DraftKings, FanDuel and more.