NBA Game of the Week: Boston Celtics vs. Philadelphia 76ers

Boston Celtics (25-9) vs. Toronto Raptors (24-14)
Thursday, January 9th - 7:00PM ET - Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia, PA
Betting Line: TBD

The Boston Celtics are 0-2 this season against Philadelphia. They'll have another chance to redeem themselves this Thursday night when they visit the Sixers for a nationally televised game in Philly.

Boston has been trending up. They're 8-2 in their last 10 games with wins over Dallas, Detroit, Charlotte (2x), Toronto, Cleveland, Atlanta, and Chicago. The two losses were against Toronto and Washington.

Philadelphia, on the other hand, is 4-6 in their last 10 games. They lost to Miami (2x), Dallas, Orlando, Indiana, and Houston in that stretch. The wins were over Washington Detroit, and Milwaukee.

The last time these teams met, Joel EMbiid played like a man possessed. He crushed the Celtics for 38 points, 11 rebounds, 6 assists, and a block. Tobias Harris dropped 23 points, 8 rebounds, 7 assists, and 2 blocks.

For Boston, Kemba Walker dropped 29 points and 8 rebounds. Enes Kanter contributed with 20 points, 9 rebounds, 2 steals, and 2 blocks off the bench.

Unfortunately for the C's, Kemba Walker is expected to miss Thursday game. Walker is an integral part to this young yet talented Boston team. He leads the team in points (22.5) and assists (5.2). Walker also has the highest PER of all Boston starters.

Joel Embiid is the MVP on this talented Philly team. He leads the team in points (23.4), rebounds (12.3), and blocks (1.4). He also leads the team with a 25.58 PER.

Embiid didn't practice on Tuesday with an injury (finger). His absence would be huge for Philly. Without their MVP, this team doesn't have much of an identity. Embiid is the heart and soul of this team as well as their biggest contributor.

With Embiid on the floor, the Sixers are a big team that can play inside and from mid-range though they lack a true deep threat.

They've beaten the Celtics twice already this year, but momentum is not on their side. I don't like Boston's chances of beating Philly without Walker. It's going to be three in-a-row for Philly this Thursday night.