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Philadelphia 76ers vs. New Orleans Hornets NBA Preview & Free Pick

76ers vs Hornets NBA Spread/Handicapping

The Philadelphia 76ers made a monumental move this summer sending Andre Iguodala out West in exchange for Andrew Bynum, who is arguably the best big man in the game behind Dwight Howard. The only problem? Bynum’s yet to play a single minute.

Philadelphia 76ers (1-2) @ New Orleans Hornets (2-1)
Wednesday, November 7, 2012 on ESPN
New Orleans Arena
8:00 PM ET
Moneyline: OFF
Spread: Hornets -1 from GTBets.eu
O/U: 180.5

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Both the 76ers and the New Orleans Hornets are dealing with injuries early in the year, and both teams will face off in New Orleans on ESPN Wednesday night.

Philadelphia 76ers

The Philadelphia 76ers traded away a perimeter scorer in Iguodala this offseason, and with Bynum still out with a bad knee, they’ve yet to figure out how to compensate for their missing points. The team is averaging a dreadful 85.3 points, and while they’re only three games into the year, finding points has to be a concern moving forward.

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They’re the second-worst scoring team in the league, and while they do have a solid contributor in Jrue Holiday at 19.3 points per game, they only have two other players averaging more than nine points per contest.

Defensively, this team makes up—at least a little bit—for their stagnant offense. They’re the 11th-best scoring defense in the league, as they allow just 95 points per game. They’re not stealing the ball or blocking shots at an exceptionally high rate, but coach Doug Collins has instilled a mentality of toughness on that end of the floor.

Despite Bynum being out to begin the year, this team has good balance from top to bottom. Full of potential, this roster has places where they look in almost every realm of the game, but the problem is, they are also short Jason Richardson, who is a vital part of their perimeter scoring. [ad-6571516]

New Orleans Hornets

The New Orleans Hornets are another prime example of a team that is struggling on offense early in the season. They’re averaging just 90.7 points on the year, which is only good enough for 26th in the league. They have trouble sharing the ball, as they’re 20th in the NBA in assists per game. Point guard Greivis Vasquez has been outstanding getting everybody involved, as he has a 9.7 assist-per-game average so far, but he can’t be the only one sharing if this offense is expected to get rolling.

Like Philadelphia, defense is the name of the game for the Hornets. They’ve allowed just 89 points per game, which is good enough for third in the entire NBA. Part of this is because No. 1 pick Anthony Davis is proving to be a defensive presence almost every moment he’s on the court. The problem come Wednesday is that he may be absent from the contest. Davis has a concussion that could keep him out, but fortunately for New Orleans, they have a big man in Robin Lopez who has stepped in and provided more rebounds, more blocks and nearly as many points as Davis thus far. The team is also without star perimeter scorer Eric Gordon to start the season.

This game is going to come down to two very good defenses against two very bad offenses. Philly may have the best scorer on the floor in Holiday, but the Hornets will have five double-digit scorers—six if Davis plays. The Hornets have had the better offense and defense this year, so the edge goes to them in what is likely to be a hard-fought game in New Orleans.

Trends

Under is 9-1 in PHI last 10 vs. Western Conference.
Under is 9-3 in PHI last 12 Wed. games.
NO are 11-0 ATS in their last 11 home games.
NO are 11-3 ATS in their last 14 games overall.
Over is 6-2-1 in NO last 9 Wed. games.
Under is 7-2-1 in the last 10 meetings.

Score Prediction: New Orleans Hornets 92 – 76ers 89

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