The Philadelphia 76ers will try to extend their winning streak to four versus the Golden State Warriors at 8:30 AM on TV5.
What’s up with the Golden State Warriors?
This isn’t a particularly fun time to be a member of Dub Nation. After a huge win versus the Boston Celtics less than a week ago, the Golden State Warriors are in a tailspin. First, they lost to the Milwaukee Bucks in a game where Draymond Green got a fan ejected from the arena because of alleged threatening remarks towards him.
Then, they lost to the Indiana Pacers, in a game where Steph Curry hurt his shoulder. The team said Curry partially dislocated his shoulder, which will force him to miss at least two weeks to a month. That much-awaited, guaranteed intense Christmas Day game between the Warriors and the Memphis Grizzlies? Not looking that intense.
Without Curry, the already-struggling Warriors will again have to pull out other weapons from their roster to avoid the bottom end of the play-in scrum. In 10th place in the Western Conference, that’s exactly where they currently sit: miles away from defending the crown.
What’s up with the Philadelphia 76ers?
The Philadelphia 76ers are a team looking like the worst is behind them. James Harden has returned to the floor after missing about a month due to a foot injury. In his comeback, he’s putting up James Harden numbers: 22 points, 13 assists, and six rebounds per game.
Joel Embiid is also playing in one of those stretches where it’s like he’s personally engraving his name on the MVP trophy. He just dropped a 53-point, 12-rebound game versus the Charlotte Hornets, then followed it up with a 38-point game against the Sacramento Kings.
More than the individual Harden-Embiid stats, what’s great about the Sixers is the three-game winning streak. If Tobias Harris and Matisse Thybulle also go on a hot streak of their own, Philly won’t miss Tyrese Maxey much.
Storyline to watch out for
Embiid’s 53-point effort versus the Hornets came despite a decent Charlotte frontcourt. The Warriors’ bigs will have headaches trying to contain Embiid.
The Warriors’ chances fall on the barrage of 3s they can throw at the Sixers, a team that has its own share of shooters in Harris, Georges Niang, and Shake Milton.
The Warriors will try to turn this into a shootfest but Embiid is the dominating force inside that will no doubt take control of the game.
Without Curry, the Warriors are at a sure disadvantage. Jordan Poole will have to show up and hold one of his patented Poole parties for Golden State to keep up.
Otherwise, Harden and Embiid will have a field day alternating buckets on the crippled Warriors.