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Ben Simmons is going to hear and feel the hatred from Philadelphia fans tonight as he returns to the city where he quit on his team, and you have to wonder whether it is a good idea for the Nets to have brought him.

Simmons will not be playing anytime soon as he is being described as week-to-week, and it may not be until next season when we see him actually play alongside Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving. But he is expected to be watching from the bench tonight at the Wells Fargo Center, and no basketball fan has an excuse to miss a game that is leading off an exciting TNT doubleheader.

The nightcap is Golden State at Denver as Nikola Jokic continues to make a case that he should be the MVP, tonight is also a good night to see whether Joel Embiid, the -130 favorite, can outdo Jokic, the +175 second choice, in the race for the NBA’s biggest piece of individual hardware.

Brooklyn is a 4.5-point underdog in the first game and the Nuggets are getting three points at home.

It is a small slate for the NBA as the Association moves aside somewhat to allow college basketball conference tournament take place and steal some of the spotlight heading into March Madness. But make no mistake, there will be some madness tonight in Southeastern Pennsylvania as Brooklyn tries to win two in a row for the first time since Feb. 14-16.

"I love when there's rivalries. I love when there's teams that are in the same conference that want to play each other and go after each other. That's all good,” Sixers coach Doc Rivers said. “The league is in a great place right now. It really is. I mean, you look at the East, there's five, six teams that legitimately can win the East. In the West, the same thing. So if you're over at the league, if you're Adam Silver right now, you're loving the league, you really are. Because competition is good, right? That's what we want. We want a good, hard game, with competition. And that's a great thing, and I think we have it in our league right now."

Embiid is coming off a 43-point, 14-rebound performance against the Chicago Bulls and had 34 points and seven boards the last time these two teams met, and he figures to be matched up against former teammate Andre Drummond. Because Drummond is the superior rebounder, and because Embiid also failed to reach double figures in rebounds the previous time these teams played, one of our plays tonight is Embiid going under 12.5 rebounds (-135).

We also get to see James Harden face his former team for the first time, with the Sixers having gone 5-0 in is first five appearances with his new team, one of which ended with The Bearded One getting a triple-double. He is expected to be checked tonight by Irving, who has had at least two steals in three of his last four games. His over/under in that category tonight is not yet posted, but you will want to go over if it comes out at 0.5 or 1.5.

Another Irving line that is bettable is his 3-pointers made over/under of just 2.5. Kyrie hit nine of them two nights ago at Charlotte, and has gone over 2.5 in nine of his last 12 games. Durant scored just 14 in his last game against the Hornets as Irving went for 50, and his point total over/under has been set at 28.5 -- a number he has eclipsed in just two of the past six games, which means stay away.

Harden had 14 assists in his most recent game against the Chicago Bulls, finishing two rebounds shy of a triple-double. His assists over/under has been set at 10.5, a number he has eclipsed in four of his five games for Philadelphia and which he should reach tonight, so take that over (+105). The rest of the Sixers and Nets are far too unpredictable to lay money on, but if you absolutely must have another then you should take Tobias Harris under 15.5 points (-110) because he has failed to reach 16 in seven of nine games.

The late game does not offer as much intrigue but is chock full of wagering opportunities. The Warriors are favored because they are sitting in third place in the West and have a four-game lead on first-place Denver, but the Nuggets have won four straight and 10 of 11 and will be going for a sweep of the four-game season series tonight. Given that 3-0 record, taking the Nuggets and the points is one pick. What else?

Well, Jokic leads the NBA in triple-doubles with 18, but the line on him getting another one tonight (he finished three assists shy of one Wednesday night against Sacramento) is just +120. The line we line better is Jokic’s combined points, assists and rebounds going over 50.5 (-115).

Steph Curry, who once upon a time was the favorite for MVP, is still in a prolonged slump by his standards, having failed to seize upon the momentum he seemed to establish in the All-Star game when he knocked down 16 3-pointers. Curry has failed to make 50 percent of his 3s in six of seven games since then, and his over/under tonight is 3.5, a line we counsel staying away from until he does something positive with some consistency.

Klay Thompson has gone 2-for-8, 1-for-5 and 2-for-9 in his last three games, yet his 3-pointers made over/under is also 2.5. Again, stay away until there is some consistency, a quantity that the Warriors have been trying to seize all season long. Their leading scorer last game was 19-year-old rookie Jonathan Kuminga, who has (along with Kevon Looney) the assignment on Jokic tonight, which should keep him busy. Andrew Wiggins is coming off a 14-point, 11-rebound double-double and is a good bet to reach double figures in both categories again, which is on the board at an enticing +1500. We like that one as a flyer but not as part of a parlay, OK?

For the Nuggets, aside from Jokic’s over we like Monte Morris, now the second option, to go over 20.5 points, rebounds and assists combined (-110). Stay away from Aaron Gordon until he, like Curry and Thompson, does something consistently. Good luck!