76ers vs Bucks Picks and Predictions: Milwaukee Flexes Champion Muscles Against Philly

Joel Embiid has vaulted atop the NBA MVP odds board as he has carried the 76ers up to this point. Against the Bucks, our NBA betting picks aren't expecting Embiid to be able to do enough without his new co-star.

Last Updated: Feb 17, 2022 11:05 AM ET Read Time: 4 min
Khris Middleton Milwaukee Bucks NBA
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports

The Milwaukee Bucks are set to host a Philadelphia 76ers team that is coming off of a 48-point loss to the Boston Celtics on Tuesday. It’ll be interesting to see whether or not the Sixers can put that performance behind them, but it’s not going to be easy against a very good Bucks team. 

Will Philadelphia find a way to compete with Milwaukee on the road, despite James Harden being out until after the All-Star break? Check out our 76ers vs. Bucks NBA picks and predictions to find out. 

76ers vs Bucks odds

This odds widget represents the best odds available for each betting market from regulated sportsbooks.

After opening as 6-point favorites over the Sixers, the Bucks are now laying 6.5 on a majority of sportsbooks. The total is a bit all over the place in this one, as it opened at 224 and is now between 223.5 and 224.5.

Use the live odds widget above to track any future line movements right until tip-off and be sure to check out the full NBA odds before betting to ensure you get the best number.

76ers vs Bucks predictions

Predictions made on 2/17/2022 at 10:00 a.m. ET.
Click on each prediction to jump to the full analysis.

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76ers vs Bucks game info

Location: Fiserv Forum, Milwaukee, WI
Date: Thursday, February 17, 2022
Tip-off: 8:30 p.m. ET

76ers vs Bucks betting preview

Key injuries

76ers: James Harden G (Out).
Bucks: Grayson Allen G (Doubtful), George Hill G (Out), Pat Connaughton G (Out), Brook Lopez C (Out).
Find our latest NBA injury reports.

Betting trend to know

The Sixers are 2-5 against the spread in their last seven games. Find more NBA betting trends for 76ers vs. Bucks.

76ers vs Bucks picks and predictions

Our predictions are compiled from the analysis of the spread and total and are indications of where we are leaning for this game.
Our best bet is the play that we like the most for this game, which we would actually put some of our bankroll behind.

Spread analysis

Until the Sixers get Harden back from his hamstring injury, it’s going to be hard for this Philadelphia team to compete with the league’s elite. Sure, Joel Embiid is one of the best players in the league and is surrounded by a competent group of role players, but it’s important not to underestimate how well Seth Curry was playing for the Sixers. 

Curry is one of the best shooters in the entire NBA and created a lot of space for his teammates. Andre Drummond was also giving the Sixers some solid minutes off the bench, Of course, those will be small absences when Philadelphia ultimately has one of the game’s best shooting guards out there. But for now, asking the Sixers to compete with the Bucks isn’t fair. 

Milwaukee likely won’t have much of an answer for Embiid in this game, but the Sixers also won’t be able to stop either of Khris Middleton or Giannis Antetokounmpo in this one. The Bucks legitimately have a huge advantage on the wing in this one, and both players will make the right plays when the Sixers load up to stop them. Middleton, especially, is in a good position here. The Sixers just don’t have anybody that can match up with him. Philadelphia could try Matisse Thybulle, but that’s not a great assignment for him. The Sixers will likely try Embiid on Giannis at times, which also is likely to fail.  

Jrue Holiday’s play could also be absolutely massive in this one. Holiday is capable of completely locking down Maxey, which would be a nightmare for Philadelphia. The youngster is extremely important to what the Sixers do on offense, and they can’t afford to have him playing poorly as Embiid’s main source of help. Meanwhile, Holiday is also plenty capable of having a big game on offense, too. 

For what it’s worth, Milwaukee is also 5-1 both straight-up and against the spread in its last six meetings with Philadelphia. The Sixers are also just 6-19 against the spread when facing teams that make at least 14.0 threes per game since the start of last season. 

Prediction: Bucks -6 (-110) 

Over/Under analysis

The Over is 3-2 in the last five games that Philadelphia has played and it’s now hit in the last six games that Milwaukee has played. The Over is also 8-1 in the last nine games that the Bucks have played, and it’s been Milwaukee that has done the heavy lifting on most nights. 

The Bucks have scored at least 128 points in four of their last six, showing just how explosive this team can be when it is playing well. The Sixers, meanwhile, are due for a better offensive performance after scoring just 87 in a blowout loss to the Celtics last game. 

It’s also worth noting that these two teams combined to score 227 points when they met on November 9. Embiid wasn’t even out there for Philly in that game and he should have a monstrous game on the offensive end tonight. 

The Over is 18-7 when Philadelphia has scored 105 or fewer points in back-to-back games over the last three seasons, and it’s also 31-19 in the second half of the season for Milwaukee over the last two seasons. 

Prediction: Over 223.5 (-110) 

Best bet

Embiid has scored at least 32 points in 10 of his last 15 games and that’s exactly what he’ll need to do in order to hit the Over on his point total tonight. This matchup with the Bucks is, however, a good one for Philadelphia’s superstar. With Lopez out for the season, Milwaukee lacks the physical presence inside that it needs to stop a guy with Embiid’s blend of size, skill and athleticism. 

The Bucks did acquire Serge Ibaka at the trade deadline, but he’s a little too small to be responsible for covering Embiid for long stretches. Overall, the Bucks might convincingly win this game tonight, but you should expect Embiid to go down swinging.

Pick: Joel Embiid Over 31.5 points (-110) 

NBA parlays

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