NBA Saturday: Sixers and Heat Take Center Court in the East
NBA SATURDAY NIGHT ACTION: PHILADELPHIA 76ERS at MIAMI HEAT
James Harden has been killing it with his new squad so far, but faces a huge test versus the top team in the East with Saturday night's big game at Miami.
Indeed, the Miami (42-21, #1 seed) and Philadelphia (38-23, #2 seed) matchup could be a conference finals preview given the way both teams have risen to prominence.
Both the Sixers--winners of 4 straight--and Heat have both been red hot lately, as Philadelphia's won 7 of their last 10 contests (6-4 ATS), while Miami is currently on an 8-2 run (6-4 ATS). And while the Sixers boast one of the NBA's best road records (21-10), the Heat have even more formidable at home, going 21-7 overall.
The tipoff is at 8 pm ET.
OPINION (courtesy of Pointspreads.ca):
We'd like to see both teams rested in order to get an honest determination as to the best team at the moment. But that's not going to be the case on Saturday night as the host Miami Heat enjoys a definite scheduling advantage.
The 76ers play a home game against Cleveland on Friday night, then must fly south for the showdown in South Beach less than 24 hours later. Friday's opponent, the Cavs are 10 games over .500 and won't be a pushover. They should take a toll on the Sixers' energy level.
Meanwhile, the Heat are coming off demolishing the fraud Brooklyn Nets and should be well-rested and ready.
So, we like the home favourite to win and cover, and remain the top seed in the East.