This article is part of our Handicapping the NBA series.
Wizards to win (+220) at PHI – BetMGM (3:08 PM CT)
With Joel Embiid ruled out, I think the 76ers will struggle to generate offense, and their defense will obviously take a hit as well. Philadelphia has been annihilated in this series' non-Embiid minutes. When he's been off the court against the Wizards, the 76ers have a -16.8 net rating (in non-garbage time).
Wizards +6.5 at PHI – DraftKings (1:12 PM CT)
The loss of Joel Embiid is obviously a major blow for the Sixers, but they're at home and still have enough firepower to close out the series. My point is that I wouldn't be surprised if the Sixers win, but I will be surprised if it's anything close to an easy victory. Philadelphia struggled in the second half of Game 4 without Embiid, and it's not a great sign that they lost a game in which Russell Westbrook and Bradley Beal combined to shoot 12-of-42 from the field. They almost certainly won't shoot that poorly again (though they also probably won't go 20-of-24 at the line), and if Westbrook finally breaks through with a strong game, the Wizards will have a chance to stay alive and force the series back to DC.
Russell Westbrook OVER 23.5 points (-113) at PHI – DraftKings
I'm putting my money where my mouth is. Westbrook has been all over the map in the series, most recently turning in a 3-of-19 performance in Game 4. In typical Westbrook fashion, he salvaged a great fantasy line with 21 rebounds and 14 assists, but he'll need to be more effective as a scorer for Washington to have any chance to pull the upset. With no Embiid, Westbrook should have a clearer path to finishing at the basket, and he's already worked his way to the line 31 times in the last three games.
You could bet each one of these individually, but we've been a bit hot with the parlays as of late, so I thought we'd up the ante. Especially with Joel Embiid (knee) out, Harris tends to become the main scorer AND rebounder on the team, which matters plenty when he's recorded double-doubles in each of the last two games. Doncic is also due for an explosive game after scoring just 19 on 9-of-24 from the field last time out. The Clippers probably still win, but Doncic just has way too much offensive usage not to be in range for that over, which is actually the lowest it's been since the start of the series.
Trae Young OVER 25.5 Points (-106) at NY – FanDuel (11:18 AM CT)
Young has played a couple of the best basketball games in his career at Madison Square Garden, especially in this year's playoffs. In Game 1, Young posted 32 points and a game-winning shot while making 11-of-23 from the field. In Game 2, the guard notched 30 points, shooting 11-of-20 from the field. Although Young didn't hit 26 points in Game 3, he did go over 26 in Game 4, and now in a crucial Game 5 for the Hawks, I expect Young to come out and put on a show at MSG. Young will need to take on a large role offensively if the Hawks hope to close out this series in New York.
Dillon Brooks OVER 20.5 points (-115) at UTA – BetMGM (1:41 PM CT)
Since the end of the regular season, Brooks has become a key offensive threat for the Grizzlies' attack, scoring at least 20 points in five of their last six games. Against the Jazz so far, Brooks has been dominant, averaging 25.5 points per game and scoring at least 21 in every game of the series. One of the biggest drawbacks to Brooks' game is his foul trouble, and in a crucial win-or-go-home game for the Grizzlies, I'd expect Brooks to play smart, stay out of foul trouble, and continue to be a commanding scorer.