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Houston Rockets vs Philadelphia 76ers: Injury Updates, Predicted Lineups and Starting 5s - February 17th, 2021 | NBA Season 2020-21

Houston Rockets star John Wall
Houston Rockets star John Wall
ANALYST
Modified 17 Feb 2021
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Fixtures don't get any easier for the Houston Rockets, who, after losing their last 6 travel to face Eastern Conference leaders, the Philadelphia 76ers, on Wednesday.

Having impressed with their new-look roster, the Houston Rockets' injury frailties have held them back from making progress toward the West's playoff berths and now sit 14th in the conference. The franchise is struggling without star Christian Wood, while Oladipo has played one game in the last four matchups.

The Philadelphia 76ers meanwhile have hit a rough patch of form, losing their previous 3 outings - worryingly all against teams above 500. Without superstar Joel Embiid, Philly are weak, though having their MVP-calibre center fit for the playoffs is of far greater importance to coach Doc Rivers.

Houston Rockets vs Philadelphia 76ers: Injury Updates

Houston Rockets

Stephen Silas' injury woes continue to worsen as we approach the league's midway point. With stars Christian Wood and Victor Oladipo sidelined, Silas was also forced to drop both P.J. Tucker and Eric Gordon in their matchup with Washington on Monday.

The Houston Rockets head coach was confident that both would be day-to-day prior to this matchup and it could prove essential that they play if they are to avoid another blowout loss. Center Ray Spalding limped off in Washington with an Achilles injury and is out for the foreseeable future while Dante Exum and Chris Clemons remain out long-term.

Philadelphia 76ers

The Philadelphia 76ers injury report is far briefer than their opponent's, although could see them compete again without star center Joel Embiid. Their MVP candidate has been treated with the utmost care this season and was rested in the 76ers' loss to Utah on Monday.

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Joel Embiid dunks for the Philadelphia 76ers
Joel Embiid dunks for the Philadelphia 76ers

Aside from Embiid, Philadelphia 76ers' only other absentee is guard Shake Milton, who remains out indefinitely.

Houston Rockets vs Philadelphia 76ers: Predicted Lineups

Houston Rockets

Such has been the Houston Rockets' ever-changing injury landscape, their lineup on Monday was their 15th different starting unit in 27 games. Indeed, no starting 5 has been the same for more than four games, which has somewhat stunted their consistency since the James Harden trade.

At the time of writing, P.J. Tucker, Eric Gordon and Victor Oladipo are all listed as questionable to play against the Philadephia 76ers. With that in mind, Silas may maintain the same starters that played in Washington. John Wall led the team in that fixture with 29 points and 11 assists while fellow guard, David Nwaba impressed with 19 points and 11 boards.

Philadelphia 76ers

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Hopefully, for fans of the Philadelphia 76ers, Joel Embiid will return to the court to take advantage of the Houston Rockets missing star center Christian Wood. Without Embiid in Utah, the offensive burden was left to Ben Simmons and Tobias Harris, who combined for 78 points and 19 rebounds on the night.

It has been known for a long time how much the Philadelphia 76ers struggle without Embiid. However, the franchise has consistently been preparing for the postseason, aiming to get the Cameroonian there fit rather than risk any injury worries throughout the regular season.

Backup center Dwight Howard came off the bench to provide 14 points and 12 boards against the Jazz, yet another player who will help the franchise as they aim to reach the NBA Finals this year.

Houston Rockets vs Philadelphia 76ers: Predicted Starting 5s

Houston Rockets

SG - David Nwaba, PG - John Wall, SF - Jae-Sean Tate, PF - Danuel House, C - DeMarcus Cousins.

Philadelphia 76ers

SG - Ben Simmons, PG - Seth Curry, SF - Danny Green, PF - Tobias Harris, C - Joel Embiid

Published 17 Feb 2021, 03:49 IST
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