Will Joel Embiid play in Game 1 vs. Heat?

Miami Heat vs Philadelphia 76ers odds: tv channel schedule, preview, spread

Olynyk, Heat to duel with 76ers in Round 1

After missing 68 straight games with a mysterious shoulder ailment, the number one overall pick in the 2017 draft is finally available for action.

On the season, Embiid is averaging 22.9 points on 48.3% shooting (30.8% from long range) while racking up 11 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.8 blocks per game.

I believe that this young Sixers team has a legitimate shot to get to the NBA Finals this year if they get to the Eastern Conference Finals.

The bad blood between the two teams dates back to the preseason, when Hassan Whiteside and Joel Embiid engaged in one of the more memorable Twitter battles of the year.

"The Jazz have been the surprise packet of the season, storming up the standings after a poor start, thanks to the dynamic play of Simmons" rival for Rookie of the Year Donovan Mitchell and the return of defensive ace Rudy Gobert. Also, the top-seeded Toronto Raptors will host the Washington Wizards in the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs.

The NBA season came to a close in a big way Wednesday. They've won 16 games in a row, and a majority of them without their best player. "I don't plan on him playing in Game 1".

Embiid was injured March 28 in a collision with teammate Markelle Fultz. The question is, will he be starting against the Heat in Game 1, Saturday night in South Philly?

76ers are 0-5 ATS in their last 5 games after scoring more than 125 points in their previous game.

The Sixers beat up on some awful teams during their season-closing 16-game winning streak (only three of those 16 opponents will be in the playoffs this weekend), but still, 16 straight wins is impressive. The series shifts to Miami for Game 3 on Thursday and Game 4 on April 21.

On Wednesday, Embiid stumped for Brown to win National Basketball Association coach of the year, teammate Ben Simmons for Kia Rookie of the Year and himself, naturally, to win the KIA Defensive Player of the Year Award.

"I've been playing solid all year", Simmons told ESPN's Chris Haynes. Look for the game to slow down a bit more than usual and take the under in Game 1 of this first-round Eastern Conference Playoff matchup on Saturday night.

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