In their first meeting of the season earlier this month, Joel Embiid dropped 27 points and nine rebounds to help the Philadelphia 76ers beat the OKC Thunder 117-93.
Coming in with a dismal13-game losing streak, the OKC Thunder are 20-40 on the season. Meanwhile, the Philadelphia 76ers are on a four-game skid and lost their pole position in the East to the Brooklyn Nets. Doc Rivers' men will roll out at home with a 39-21 record on the season.
Fixture: OKC Thunder vs Philadelphia 76ers - NBA Season 2020-21.
Date & Time: Monday, April 26th, 2021; 7:00 PM ET (Tuesday; 4:30 AM IST).
Venue: Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia, PA.
OKC Thunder Preview
The OKC Thunder have not fared well since the All-Star break as they continue their slump in the Western Conference standings.
The injury-prone team has struggled without their star player Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. They could face another uphill battle on Monday against a top contender. the Philadelphia 76ers, in Gilgeous-Alexander's absence.
The OKC Thunder are coming off a loss against the red-hot Washington Wizards. Mark Daigneault's side went cold in the fourth quarter, managing only 19 points as Westbrook and company surged beat them 129-109.
Darius Bazley and Theo Maledon registered 20-point outings, while Luguentz Dort tallied 18 points and eight boards, albeit in a losing cause.
Key Player - Luguentz Dort
OKC Thunder guard Luguentz Dort continues to impress this season. The sophomore is averaging 26 points per game in five appearances in April, including a massive 42-point outing against the Utah Jazz.
Dort, who aspires to become the best on-ball defender in the league, has impressed on the offensive end of the hardwood.
More game time since his rookie season has done wonders for the young talent. In 46 games for the OKC Thunder this campaign, Dort is averaging 14 points in 29.7 minutes per game. He is also tallying 3.7 rebounds and 1.6 assists per contest while shooting at 40% from the field and 34.6% from the three-point line.
OKC Thunder Predicted Lineup
Point Guard - Theo Maledon l Shooting Guard - Luguentz Dort l Small Forward - Darius Bazley l Power Forward - Aleksej Pokusevski l Center - Moses Brown.
Philadelphia 76ers Preview
The Philadelphia 76ers have cooled off, going 5-5 in their last ten games, thanks to injuries to multiple players.
2021 All-Star Joel Embiid, a unanimous MVP candidate this season, has led the 76ers with an impressive 30 points per game this campaign. Tobias Harris has also emerge as a decent second scoring option behind Embiid, tallying 20.2 points per outing.
Meanwhile, Ben Simmons has been his illustrious self, making an impact at both ends of the floor. Simmons' return could fix the kinks in the Philadelphia 76ers' roster and help the team return to winning ways.
The Philadelphia 76ers are coming off back-to-back losses against the Milwaukee Bucks. So Doc Rivers' team could be eager to shrug off the two setbacks when they take on the OKC Thunder next.
Key Player - Joel Embiid
Philadelphia 76ers star Joel Embiid has been on a tear since returning from injury. The 27-year-old is on a seven-game streak of 20+ point outings, including a 39-point performance against the Brooklyn Nets.
Against the Phoenix Suns, Embiid came close to sinking what could have been the most impressive game-tying shot in league history. Nevertheless, he remains the centerpiece around whom the team's title aspirations rest on.
The 2x All-Defensive player has appeared in 41 games for the Philadelphia 76ers this season, averaging an impressive 30 points, 11.1 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game. He is shooting at a phenomenal 51.3% from the field and 37.5% from the three-point line.
For this game, though, Embiid is on the Philadelphia 76ers' injury report and is listed as 'day to day'. However, he could suit up against the OKC Thunder.
Philadelphia 76ers Predicted Lineup
Point Guard - Shake Milton l Shooting Guard - Seth Curry l Small Forward - Danny Green l Power Forward - Tobias Harris l Center - Joel Embiid.
Thunder vs 76ers Match Prediction
The OKC Thunder will enter this game as the underdogs. Their roster, devoid of star players, could be no match for a top contender like the Philadelphia 76ers.
If he plays, Joel Embiid will look to take his side out of their slump. So a monster outing from him could be on the cards in this game, which augurs well for the Philadelphia 76ers' hopes of winning on Monday.
Where to watch Thunder vs 76ers game?
The game between the OKC Thunder and the Philadelphia 76ers will be telecast on NBC Sports Philadelphia and Bally Sports Oklahoma. The match can also be live-streamed with an NBA League Pass.