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Sixers at Nuggets: 3 storylines to watch and how to live stream the game

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Sixers at Nuggets: 3 storylines to watch and how to live stream the game

Updated: 8:24 p.m. 

The Sixers (32-17) will look to keep their momentum going as they face the Denver Nuggets (32-15) at Pepsi Center on Saturday night, but they will be without three of their starters. Joel Embiid will rest, while Jimmy Butler is out with a sprained right wrist and Wilson Chandler is out with hamstring tightness.

Here are the essentials:

• When: 9 p.m. ET with Sixers Pregame Live at 8:30 p.m.
• Where: Pepsi Center
• Broadcast: NBC Sports Philadelphia
• Live stream: NBCSportsPhiladelphia.com and the NBC Sports MyTeams app

And here are three storylines to watch out for in tonight’s game.

Similarities between Nikola Jokic and Ben Simmons

While they play very different positions, Ben Simmons and Nikola Jokic have very similar skillsets, and are both ridiculously talented when it comes to getting the ball in open court. While Jokic is the Nuggets' starting center, he’s got the mind (and touch) of a point guard, and while Simmons is the starting point guard, we all know his versatility in the post. It makes sense that their stat lines are very similar this season. And guess what? Simmons and Jokic are the third and fourth youngest players, respectively, in league history to reach 20 triple-doubles.

Pepsi Center

You know how good the Sixers play at home this season? Yeah, that’s also the Nuggets at Pepsi Center. They are 21-4 at home this season, tied for the best record at home in the NBA. And trust me when I tell you the altitude is a real thing. I was seriously winded 30 seconds into my workout this morning.

No Jamal Murray

You know that two-man game between Embiid and JJ Redick that we all love so much? Jokic has that going on with Jamal Murray, but he won't tonight — Murray is out tonight with a sprained left ankle. Murray is also sneaky good at those off-ball screens and has been hot over his past five games, shooting 48.5 percent from the field and 59.4 percent from three in 27.4 minutes per game.

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Sixers' Joel Embiid named All-Star starter for third consecutive season

Sixers' Joel Embiid named All-Star starter for third consecutive season

Joel Embiid is again one of the 10 best players in the NBA, according to fans, a panel of media members and his fellow players.

The Sixers’ center was named an All-Star starter on Thursday for the third consecutive season.

Starters were determined by the votes of fans (50 percent weight), media members (25 percent) and players (25 percent). 

Embiid has averaged 23.4 points, 12.3 rebounds and 3.3 assists per game for the 29-17 Sixers. He’s been sidelined for the past eight games with a torn ligament in the ring finger of his left hand. If Embiid is unable to play in the All-Star Game, which will take place on Feb. 16 in Chicago, then Commissioner Adam Silver will select an injury replacement. 

Though his scoring is down from last season, the Sixers have still been a much better team with Embiid on the floor than with him off it.

He’s second in the NBA in defensive win shares per game and fourth in defensive rebounding percentage (minimum 20 games played, 15 minutes per game). Lineups with Embiid have a 99.5 defensive rating, while lineups without him are at 106.9. 

It’s been an eventful year so far for Embiid, who’s been suspended for a fight and subsequent social media barbs, called load management “BS,” publicly grappled with questions about how to balance maturity and dominance, and sustained a nauseating injury.

Though the Cameroonian big man has said he cares most about being healthy and at his best for the playoffs, he now has another personal accolade.

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Sixers Talk podcast: Derrick Rose? Danilo Gallinari? Addressing the latest trade rumors

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Sixers Talk podcast: Derrick Rose? Danilo Gallinari? Addressing the latest trade rumors

On this edition of the Sixers Talk podcast presented by Wilmington University, Danny Pommells and Paul Hudrick discuss the latest trade rumors, the latest injury news and the brutal schedule before the All-Star break.

• Do the Sixers have a chance to land Danilo Gallinari? Is Derrick Rose the best fit? Is Marcus Morris an option?

• Josh Richardson is now on the shelf. Who picks up the slack with the team down two starters?

• Have you seen the schedule before the break? Yikes.

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Flyers, Sixers and Phillies games easily on your device.

More on the Sixers