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Oklahoma City Thunder at Philadelphia 76ers - 10/26/16 NBA Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Oklahoma City Thunder (66-34) at Philadelphia 76ers (10-72)

NBA Basketball: Wednesday, October 26, 2016 at 8:00 pm (Wells Fargo Center)

The Line: Philadelphia 76ers +8 -- Over/Under: 208.5 See the Latest Odds

TV: ESPN/FSOK/CSNP

The Oklahoma City Thunder and Philadelphia 76ers open the 2016-17 NBA season Wednesday night at the Wells Fargo Center on ESPN.

The Oklahoma City Thunder were one victory away from making the NBA Finals last season and now have dampered expectations a few months later. With Kevin Durant leaving for Golden State and no more Serge Ibaka, OKC has a different feel than years past. The Thunder are no longer a title contender and instead looking to just return to the playoffs for the seventh time in eight years. The good news for Oklahoma City is that Russell Westbrook is still an MVP candidate and Victor Oladipo gives the Thunder possibly the most explosive backcourt in the league. Steven Adams and Andre Roberson will keep the Thunder great defensively and Cameron Payne should be better with a year under his belt. The Oklahoma City Thunder have split their last four regular season openers. Alex Abrines is questionable with a hip injury.

Oklahoma City Thunder at Philadelphia 76ers - 10/26/16 NBA Pick, Odds, and Prediction

USA TODAY Sports

The Philadelphia 76ers have nowhere to go but up after winning just 47 combined games the last three seasons. Even when there was a glimmer of hope, Nerlens Noel and Ben Simmons will start the season on the bench due to injuries. That leaves the 76ers in the hands of Joel Embiid, who looked great in the preseason, and Jahlil Okafor, who is still a walking double-double when engaged. Other than that, the 76ers are what they’ve been for years, just a bunch of blah. Yes, bringing over Gerald Henderson from Portland was a nice under the radar move and T.J. McConnell is actually a decent player, but the 76ers are desperately lacking the talent to compete night in and night out. The Philadelphia 76ers have split their last four season openers.

The Thunder are 9-4 ATS in their last 13 Wednesday games and 5-16 ATS in their last 21 vs. NBA Atlantic. The 76ers are 2-9 ATS in their last 11 games playing on 3 or more days rest and 36-17-2 ATS in their last 55 vs. Western Conference. The Thunder are 5-2 ATS in the last 7 meetings in Philadelphia and 10-4 ATS in the last 14 meetings overall.

If the 76ers had Noel and Simmons, I would consider taking the points. But they don't. Even without Ibaka and Durant, the Thunder are still a playoff team in the West and have a backcourt that's going to do damage this season. We know the 76ers are the worst basketball team in the NBA and double-digit losses aren't new to them. Don't love the line, but OKC should win this game in a blowout. 

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Oklahoma City Thunder -8

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