The Atlanta Hawks and Philadelphia 76ers both made easy work of their first round opponents and now face off for a trip to the Eastern Conference Finals. In this 2021 NBA Playoffs odds post, we’ll look at the Hawks-76ers series odds, schedule, make a prediction and more.
Philadelphia was the top team in the Eastern Conference this season, which earns them home-court advantage in the series. The 76ers won the season series 2-1 against Atlanta with dominant wins in the previous two matchups.
Hawks-76ers Series Odds (Updated 6/20)
Hawks-76ers Game 7 Winner
Atlanta Hawks +7 (-108), (ML +240)
Philadelphia 76ers -7 (-112), (ML -300)
Hawks-76ers Series Schedule
Game 1: ATL 128-124 PHI
Game 2: ATL 102-118 PHI
Game 3: PHI 127-111 ATL
Game 4: PHI 100-103 ATL
Game 5: ATL 109-106 PHI
Game 6: PHI 104-99 ATL
Game 7: ATL 103-96 PHI
No. 1 Philadelphia 76ers
The 76ers secured the top seed in the Eastern Conference with an incredible regular season under first-year head coach Doc Rivers. Rivers has instilled a level of toughness in his club on the defensive end of the floor that got them over the hump in 2021. The 76ers play a similar style of ball to the Knicks, just at a much higher level. Atlanta was able to capitalize on New York’s inefficiencies by hitting outside shots at a high clip and drawing fouls early and often. Philadelphia, on the other hand, plays some of the best perimeter defense in the league behind Defensive Player of the Year candidate Ben Simmons.
The 76ers took major steps on the offensive end of the floor this season as well behind an incredible season from MVP candidate Joel Embiid. Embiid has been dominant when healthy, but he suffered a torn meniscus in the first round and may miss time during this series. Although Embiid’s health may not necessarily impact this series as much (it does make this series more interesting), Philadelphia will need the big man in the lineup in order to make a championship push.
No. 5 Atlanta Hawks
The Hawks made the New York Knicks look like the Knicks of 2019. Atlanta shot the long ball with elite efficiency and out-defended one of the best defensive clubs in the league. It was certainly a brilliant all-around effort from Atlanta in the first round, but superstar point guard Trae Young stole the show. Young averaged 29.2 points per game in his first career playoff series. He also handed out 9.8 assists per game and was the only Hawks player to increase his point production in the postseason.
The Hawks will be guaranteed to see two things from the 76ers. Philadelphia was a top-four defensive team in the league and will shoot the ball much better than the Knicks did. Atlanta will have to carry over its stout defense from the first round and Trae Young will need more help from his running mates. Bogdan Bogdanovic is arguably the second-best scorer on this Hawks team, and they will need him to step up in a big way if they are going to pull off this upset.
Hawks-76ers Series Prediction and Pick
Truthfully speaking, the 76ers are still a better team than the Hawks without Joel Embiid on the floor, even if it’s much closer. It makes it much harder to back them without the MVP-caliber center, but I’m still on Philly to win this series regardless. They have the coaching edge and certainly have the edge in playoff experience as well. With Tobias Harris and Ben Simmons leading the charge, this club’s formula for success is sustainable. Joel Embiid’s presence in this series will only be a bonus.
Hawks-76ers Series Winner: Philadelphia 76ers (-190)
Hawks-76ers Series Spread: Atlanta Hawks +1.5 (-164)