Preview: San Antonio Spurs at Philadelphia 76ers – Game #35

The San Antonio Spurs begin their five-game road trip against the Philadelphia 76ers. The five games will take place in only seven days and they will all be against Eastern Conference foes.

The Spurs, with a record of 19-15, are in seventh place in the Western Conference. They are a half-game behind the Denver Nuggets and a half-game ahead of the Dallas Mavericks. The Sixers boast a record of 26-12, which is good enough for first place in the East. In fact, only the Utah Jazz, with a record of 28-9, have a higher winning percentage the entire league.

San Antonio Spurs Injury Update

The only player out for the Spurs is DeMar DeRozan. Recently, DeRozan attended the funeral for his father. He also missed Friday’s game against the Orlando Magic, a contest the Spurs won by a final score of 104-77.

The Spurs play again tomorrow night against the Detroit Pistons. It’s not known yet if DeRozan will be available for that game.

Philadelphia 76ers Injury Update

Joe Embiid, who very well could be the leading candidate for the MVP award, got injured in Philadelphia’s most recent game. The superstar center is expected to miss at least two weeks with a knee injury. Embiid is averaging 29.9 points, 11.5 rebounds and 3.3 assists per game.

Ben Simmons, the Sixers other star player, has missed time recently due to COVID-19 protocols. However, he is listed as probable for the game against the Spurs. Simmons is averaging 16.1 points, 7.9 rebounds and 7.6 assists per game.

San Antonio Spurs Starting Lineup

Last game, the Spurs went with a starting five of Dejounte Murray, Derrick White, Keldon Johnson, Trey Lyles and Jakob Poeltl. Head coach Gregg Popovich could start that lineup again tonight but there’s a chance he could change things up due to the fact that the starting five struggled against the Magic.

If Popovich alters the starting lineup, expect Lonnie Walker IV or Rudy Gay to get the nod in place of Lyles.

Spurs vs. 76ers – How the Spurs Can Win

The 76ers have the best defense of any team in the East, allowing 106.0 points per 100 possessions. That’s the best overall mark in the East.

Considering that the Spurs had trouble scoring at times against an undermanned Magic team, offense will be the main concern tonight for San Antonio. With DeRozan out, the Spurs need big games from Dejounte Murray and Derrick White. Not only do they both need to score, they will need to make plays for teammates. If they can combine for at least 15 assists, the Spurs have a chance to escape Philly with a W.