Sixers Looking for Fifth Straight Win Against Orlando Magic

Sixers C Joel Embiid
PHILADELPHIA, PA – MAY 05: Philadelphia 76ers Center Joel Embiid (21) looks toward the net during warmups before the Eastern Conference Semifinal Game between the Boston Celtics and Philadelphia 76ers on May 05, 2018 at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, PA. (Photo by Kyle Ross/Icon Sportswire)

Don’t look now, but the Sixers are heating up. With the team beginning to get healthy, the Sixers have now won four straight games and five of their last six. On the heels of their convincing 133-113 victory over the Rockets, the Sixers are now traveling down to Orlando for a business trip against the Magic.

Orlando Magic

If the season ended today, the Magic would finish in last place with a record of 7-31 and a lowly win percentage of 18.4%. The Magic are 4-23 against Eastern Conference and a 6-20 record against teams with a winning record. They also are currently on a five-game home losing streak. The bottom line is this is a game the Sixers should win.

This will be the second time this season that the Sixers and Magic play as Philly secured a 101-96 victory on November 29th. This was during the stretch of the season in which Joel Embiid was struggling as he scored just 16 points in 4-16 shooting. The Sixers were led in scoring by Seth Curry this night, who ended with 24 points in the matchup. There will likely be a very different Joel Embiid taking the court tonight in terms of impact.

The Magic have a solid amount of young talent that they are beginning to build off. They are led in scoring by Cole Anthony, who averages 20 points, 6 rebounds, and 5.8 assists per game, but Anthony is questionable for tonight with an ankle injury. Their first-round rookie Franz Wagner has been extremely impressive so far this season and was recently named Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month. At 6’10, Wagner moves like a wing and has a fairly polished perimeter game, making him an extremely tough player to guard.

Other Injuries:

  • Markelle Fult- OUT (Torn ACL)
  • Robin Lopez- OUT (Covid)
  • Jalen Suggs- OUT (thumb)
  • Cole Anthony- Questionable (ankle)
  • Michael Carter-Williams- OUT (ankle)
  • Jonathan Isaac- OUT (Torn ACL)

Sixers Status:

The Sixers still aren’t fully out of the wood in terms of Covid and injuries, as some additional names were added to the report following the Rockets game.

It is especially disappointing to see Maxey end up in protocols after he had taken some massive steps forward in his ability to play alongside Joel Embiid prior to this. This also could be a game where there are some minutes available for Paul Reed, so it is frustrating he will be held out of this one. Regardless this should not be a game that troubles the Sixers, even if they are slightly shorthanded.

Overall Thoughts:

The Sixers are currently favored by 9.5 points in the matchup, according to FanDuel, and this should be a line the Sixers have no problem covering. Joel Embiid has been on an absolute tear and was named Eastern Conference Player of the Month as evidence of this. Embiid has been playing at an elite level and looking extremely healthy since returning from Covid. It is so fun to watch him compete at this level, and the Magic are likely dreading attempting to guard the MVP candidate.

Tonight’s game will tip-off at 7 PM and is taking place in Orlando. There has been a great amount of chatter about this being a business trip which is an awesome attitude to see from the team.

The Sixers have moved up to fifth place in the East following the Cavs’ loss last night and will look to continue to climb the standings. Hopefully, tonight will be another step in this direction.