Heat vs. Sixers NBA expert prediction and odds for Eastern Conference Play-In Tournament

Betting odds, pick and prediction for the Eastern Conference play-in tournament matchup between the Miami Heat and Philadelphia 76ers.
Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid.
Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid. / Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

The No. 7 seed is on the line on Wednesday night with the Miami Heat traveling to Wells Fargo Center to take on the Philadelphia 76ers.

The winner of this game will face the New York Knicks in the first round of the playoffs while the loser will have to play for the No. 8 seed – and a chance to play the Boston Celtics in the first round – on Friday night. 

These teams split their season series, but Philly won the last two meetings, including one with Joel Embiid (knee) back in the lineup. 

How should we bet on this Eastern Conference play-in showdown? 

First, let’s break down the odds and my best bet for this massive Eastern Conference matchup: 

Heat vs. Sixers odds, spread and total

Heat vs. Sixers how to watch

  • Date: Wednesday, April 17
  • Time: 7:00p.m. EST
  • Venue: Wells Fargo Center
  • How to watch (TV): ESPN
  • Heat record: 46-36
  • Sixers record: 47-35

Heat vs. Sixers injury reports

Heat injury report

  • Tyler Herro – available
  • Kevin Love – available
  • Josh Richardson – out
  • Duncan Robinson – probable
  • Terry Rozier – out

Sixers injury report

  • Robert Covington – out
  • Joel Embiid – questionable
  • KJ Martin – questionable
  • De’Anthony Melton – out

Heat vs. Sixers key players to watch

Miami Heat 

Jimmy Butler: Playoff Jimmy is activated? The Heat star has carried Miami to the NBA Finals in two of the last four seasons, including three trips to the Eastern Conference Finals. Can he find a new gear to upset Philly in the play-in? 

Philadelphia 76ers

Joel Embiid: The biggest key in this game is the Sixers’ record with Embiid. The team is 31-8 when he plays, and the reigning league MVP put up 29 points in a win over Miami in April. Embiid finished the regular season averaging 34.7 points, 11.0 rebounds and 5.6 assists per game. 

Heat vs. Sixers prediction and pick

I’m concerned about Miami in this game, especially since the team won’t have starting point guard Terry Rozier (neck) for this matchup. 

The Heat finished the regular season with the No. 2 record against the spread as road underdogs (16-9), but they are running into a juggernaut in this one.

Not only is Philly 31-8 straight up when Embiid plays, but the team is 21-11 against the spread as a home favorite. 

Miami finished the season strong, ranking No. 1 in net rating over its final 10 games, but the Heat still lost to Philly with Embiid playing on a minutes limit. 

If the big man is able to handle his usual role, I don’t see the Heat pulling off the upset. I’ll lay the points with the Sixers as long as Embiid is good to go. 

Pick: Sixers -5 (-110)

Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.

Find Peter Dewey's NBA betting record here (futures included). You can also follow my daily plays on BetStamp here.