The 76ers' campaign has been beset by the unavailability of the team's top players for various reasons. Ben Simmons is still indefinitely out, while Joel Embiid and Matisse Thybulle are still under the NBA's health and safety protocols.
Considering the same, they could be at a severe disadvantage against the Jazz as they try to snap a four-game losing streak.
The slumping Utah Jazz, meanwhile, are 1-4 in their last five games. Their once top-three defense has now slipped out of the top ten in those five games. After being undefeated on their home floor, they have now surrendered two straight games to Eastern Conference teams.
They can't afford to be complacent against the 76ers if they want to boost their sagging campaign. The Jazz will face a determined if short-handed team that is learning to play in the face of adversity.
Fixture: Philadelphia 76ers vs Utah Jazz | 2021-22 NBA season.
Date & Time: Tuesday, November 16th; 10:00 PM ET (Wednesday, November 17th; 8:30 AM IST).
Venue: Vivint Arena, Salt Lake City, UT.
Philadelphia 76ers Preview
The Philadelphia 76ers' character and resilience have been greatly tested. While there seems to be no end in sight for the Ben Simmons saga, the rest of the roster has been decimated by injuries. Although they have been fairly competitive in all their losses, there isn't much that can be taken away from morale-boosting victories.
Tyrese Maxey is already proving that he could be the 76ers' long-term answer at the point guard position. Veterans Tobias Harris, Andre Drummond and Seth Curry would try to hold the fort until the cavalry returns. They have to be at their best to stop a dreadful losing streak.
Key Player - Andre Drummond
Andre Drummond has churned out a double-double average in five games without Joel Embiid. He is averaging 12.0 PPG, an astounding 17.6 RPG and 3.2 APG without JoJo in the lineup. The backup big man's presence has been invaluable to the young Tyrese Maxey, who is now starting to blossom into the starting point guard role.
Andre Drummond has provided the 76ers a legitimate low post presence in offense and defense. His relentless energy on the boards gives the team much-needed extra possession. Even with Tobias Harris back in harness, the 28-year old continues to be a crucial part of the lineup.
Philadelphia 76ers Predicted Lineup
G - Tyrese Maxey | G - Seth Curry | F - Georges Niang | F - Tobias Harris | C - Andre Drummond.
Utah Jazz Preview
The Utah Jazz's defensive issues are no longer a hiccup. They have full-blown coughing issues. Once at the top of the defensive rating, they have now dropped out of the top ten. More worryingly, their defense in their last five games has become the worst in the league.
This development is quite surprising for a team that has Rudy Gobert, the reigning Defensive Player of the Year and three-time winner of the award. The Jazz also have Mike Conley and Donovan Mitchell, who are solid in defense.
Simply put, if the Jazz fail to return to their defensive identity, particularly in the regular season, they may not be out of their slump soon.
Key Player - Donovan Mitchell
With a sieve-like defense in their last few games, the Utah Jazz are only putting pressure on Donovan Mitchell to carry more of the scoring burden. The two-time All-Star is having his usual season, with averages of 25.6 PPG, 5.1 APG and 4.4 RPG. After a slow start to his campaign, his shooting efficiency is starting to hit the norm.
If the Jazz can't crank up their defense, Donovan Mitchell's offense will be needed more than usual. The good thing about the last few games for the Jazz is Bojan Bogdanovic's seeming return to shooting form. Mitchell could certainly use another scoring outlet for Utah to get over the hump.
Utah Jazz Predicted Lineup
G - Mike Conley | G - Donovan Mitchell | F - Bojan Bogdanovic | F - Royce O'Neale | C - Rudy Gobert.
76ers vs Jazz Match Prediction
The 76ers have the fighting spirit and resilience to try and win games. They are just too handicapped to win games, particularly on the road. Joel Embiid, Danny Green and Matisse Thybulle are not suiting up. Their absence leaves very little room for error or missed shots for the 76ers.
The Utah Jazz might get some leeway even if their usual defensive play is still out of order. They should have enough on their roster to face a depleted team. If they play some semblance of defense and take care of the ball, Utah could end their losing skid.
Where to watch 76ers vs Jazz?
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TNT will air the match between the Philadelphia 76ers and the Utah Jazz live nationally, while NBC Sports will take care of the local coverage. The NBA League Pass will provide the game's live stream.