Playoff rivals Toronto Raptors and Philadelphia 76ers face each other in Amalie Arena in Tampa, Florida. This is the first of a two-game mini-series and the Toronto Raptors are heavily outmatched by the Eastern Conference-leading Philadelphia 76ers. Joel Embiid is an early MVP candidate and his team is holding a record of 20-10.
Meanwhile, the Toronto Raptors aren’t as dominating as they used to be. They had a horrible start to the season and they will likely be fighting till the end of the season for playoff contention.
Fixture: Philadelphia 76ers vs Toronto Raptors | NBA Season 2020-21.
Date & Time: Sunday, February 21st, 7:00 PM ET (Monday, February 22nd, 5:30 AM IST).
Venue: Amalie Arena, Tampa, FL
Toronto Raptors Preview
The Toronto Raptors are struggling to win games. Despite a healthy squad, the team lacks efficiency from the floor. The Raptors rank 22nd in the league in field goals made and field goal percentage.
The Raptors’ main players, Fred VanVleet and Pascal Siakam are both averaging 21 points per game and leading the team in most statistical categories. After a rough start to the season, the Raptors are finally winning games. They are 15-15 and their mission for a playoff spot continues.
Key Player – Fred VanVleet
Fred VanVleet has improved his production on the floor massively. He has increased his shot attempts and is shooting at a higher efficiency. VanVleet, along with Siakam, is the centerpiece to the Raptors offense and his numbers are a huge reason for the team’s victories. Fred VanVleet is averaging almost 21 points per game and also leading the team in assists and steals.
Toronto Raptors Predicted Lineup
G – Fred VanVleet, G – Norman Powell, F – OG Anunoby, F – Pascal Siakam, C – Aron Baynes
Philadelphia 76ers Preview
The Philadelphia 76ers are flying high right now. They are leading the Eastern Conference with an impressive record of 20-10 and their star center, Joel Embiid is an early MVP candidate. Embiid is averaging some stellar numbers this season, he has also improved his shot selection and decision-making on the floor.
Meanwhile, this game might get tougher as Ben Simmons is questionable for the game. He is the Philadelphia 76ers’ star point guard and without his playmaking and defense, the 76ers struggle. Tobias Harris, Seth Curry, and Danny Green are fulfilling their role perfectly.
Key Player – Joel Embiid
An incredible leap from last season, Joel Embiid is dominating the Eastern Conference right now. He is averaging MVP caliber numbers and his defense has improved drastically as well. Naturally, the team’s burden of victory lies in his hands and the Philadelphia 76ers offense goes haywire with Embiid off the floor.
Philadelphia 76ers Predicted Lineup
G Ben Simmons, G Seth Curry, F Danny Green, F Tobias Harris, C Joel Embiid
76ers vs Raptors Match Prediction
The Philadelphia 76ers are the clear favorites to win this game. Their defensive strategies might overwhelm the Toronto Raptors. The Philadelphia 76ers will get ample opportunities to go on scoring runs and Joel Embiiid is expected to dominate in the paint.
The Toronto Raptors need to drastically improve their shot selection and given the tough opponent, we should expect a big scoring night from either Siakam or VanVleet.
Where to watch 76ers vs Raptors?
The Philadelphia 76ers vs Toronto Raptors game will be broadcast locally on NBC Sports Philadelphia and TSN in the US. The game can also be live-streamed on the NBA League Pass.
Published 21 Feb 2021, 03:32 IST