Jalen Brunson and the New York Knicks are currently gearing up for their upcoming first round playoff series vs the Philadelphia 76ers, who earned their way into the seventh seed position by knocking off the Miami Heat on Wednesday evening in one of the Eastern Conference Play-In games. Meanwhile, the Knicks have been rolling for the majority of this season despite dealing with a relatively insane amount of injuries, and Brunson has played his way into fringe MVP contention by carrying a New York squad that doesn't have a whole lot of talent on paper all the way to the second seed in the vaunted Eastern Conference playoff picture.

Still, not everyone (including the good folks in Las Vegas) is so convinced, as the Knicks are currently the betting underdogs in the series despite having home court advantage, meaning the first two games, along with Game 5 and Game 7, will be in Madison Square Garden.

Recently, ESPN sports media personality and occasional Knicks fan Stephen A. Smith took to his show First Take to drop a prediction for the series that will have New York fans fired up.

“This is a different day, baby,” said Smith, per First Take on X, the social media platform formerly referred to as Twitter. “Let me tell you something right now. The Sixers are going down… Now, I will openly confess to you that a significant part of the confidence I exude has an awful lot to do with Joel Embiid not being healthy… I've got (the Knicks) in five.”

Can the Knicks pull off the upset?

Indeed, a large part of the reason that the Knicks aren't even more significant underdogs is the fact that 76ers superstar big man Joel Embiid looked absolutely nothing like himself during his team's come from behind victory vs the Heat on Wednesday. Embiid had to labor up and down the floor throughout most of the evening, unable to move his feet well or display the dexterity that has made him one of the most talented big men of all time.

It's likely that had Embiid never gone down with a meniscus injury in late January, the 76ers and not the Knicks would be the number two seed in the Eastern Conference, as the team was on pace to accomplish that feat prior to the reigning MVP's unfortunate injury.

However, even with Embiid hobbled, the 76ers would appear to have a bit more talent and depth than a Knicks team that plays harder than anyone and did make some moves at the trade deadline, most notably bringing in sharpshooters Alec Burks and Bojan Bogdanovic from the Detroit Pistons.

The question of whether missing Julius Randle–also out with injury–for the playoffs is actually a good thing for the Knicks is certainly one to be had, as the power forward has flamed out in historic fashion in each of his first two postseason appearances.

In any case, the Knicks and 76ers are slated to get things underway at 6:00 PM on Saturday evening from New York.