Philadelphia 76ers vs. Utah Jazz Pick & Prediction JANUARY 6th 2024

The Philadelphia 76ers won’t have much time to dwell on a 36-point home loss to the New York Knicks.

The Sixers, who fell 128-92 to the Knicks on Friday, will have a quick turnaround with another home game Saturday night against the Utah Jazz.

Joel Embiid extended to 15 games his streak of at least 30 points and 10 rebounds with those exact numbers against the Knicks. If Embiid, who has been nursing an ankle injury, can play and achieve those totals against the Jazz, he will reach a mark of 16 not seen since Kareem Abdul-Jabbar did it in 1972.

Helping Embiid on Friday were Tyrese Maxey (27 points, nine assists) and Kelly Oubre Jr. (15 points), but the Sixers couldn’t slow the Knicks’ offense.

“It was a tough night in stretches defensively,” Philadelphia coach Nick Nurse said. “I think that we had some runs.”

Offensively, it wasn’t much better.

The Sixers shot 40.7 percent from the field, including 6-of-23 from 3-point territory.

“Just a really tough night for the ball going in for us,” Nurse said. “Threes, free throws, layups — everything seemed to be not bouncing our way.”

Embiid recently missed the Sixers’ four-game road trip due to a sprained right ankle, and he appeared to tweak his ankle in the opening minute on Friday. Tobias Harris also sat out the fourth quarter with left ankle soreness, and De’Anthony Melton was out with back soreness.

Nurse said he expects Embiid to play against the Jazz. Nurse also noted that X-rays on Harris’ ankle were negative and he likely will be questionable.

“It’ll be determined how he wakes up in the morning,” Nurse said of Harris.

The Jazz will arrive in Philadelphia following a 126-97 blowout loss at Boston on Friday. This came after Utah tied a franchise record with 154 points in an overtime victory over the Detroit Pistons on Wednesday.

The Jazz were just 34-of-94 shooting (36.2 percent) to go with 18 turnovers against the Celtics.

Lauri Markkanen led the Jazz with 17 points.

“We just looked timid around the basket early in the game,” Utah coach Will Hardy said. “I think we were pretty unphysical on the offensive end. … I think our lack of physicality on the offensive end was exposed by a very good defensive team.”

Collin Sexton added 13 points and John Collins produced 12 points and 11 rebounds for his 10th double-double of the season.

Utah was just 6 of 34 from 3-point range and, as a result, dropped to 5-15 on the road.

“The tone of the game was established early with our lack of ability to convert around the basket,” Hardy said. “Then obviously not making any threes.”

The Jazz had been playing much better with wins over the Miami Heat, Dallas Mavericks and Detroit Pistons. They won those three games by a combined 51 points.

Unfortunately, the momentum wasn’t able to carry over to Boston. The Jazz never led in the maddening lopsided defeat.

“Our locker room right now is not happy with the performance tonight and is ready to get back out there tomorrow,” Hardy said.

–Field Level Media

Docsports, The most trusted name in sports handicapping