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Two games feature on the NBA's Tuesday night schedule, and both games showcase teams looking to gain an advantage from a series that has drawn level.
The Philadelphia 76ers and Boston Celtics return their series to Boston for Game 5. After a disappointing Game 1 performance, Joel Embiid has been tremendous on the glass for the Sixers and aims to maintain his form. And Jaylen Brown's sharpshooting prowess doesn't project to be challenged when he takes the court on Tuesday night.
The Phoenix Suns and Denver Nuggets continue their exciting series in the Mile High City. Devin Booker has maintained his tremendous form, with his playmaking taking the spotlight after some explosive scoring performances. Jamal Murray's three-point shooting has taken a backseat on the Nuggets' side due to the Suns' defensive pressure.
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This year's NBA Most Valuable Player, Joel Embiid, has been fantastic for the Philadelphia 76ers since a disappointing Game 2 performance. At BetRivers, Embiid is a +102 to clear 11.5 rebounds when he faces the Boston Celtics in Game 4 of this Eastern Conference Second-Round series. Embiid has dominated the glass through this series, and he doesn't project to slow down on Tuesday night.
Embiid is coming off his best post-season performance, contributing 34 points, 13 rebounds, and four assists on 42.3% from the field while hitting 12 of his 15 free throw attempts. On the season, Embiid averaged 33.1 points, 10.2 rebounds, and 4.2 assists on 54.8% from the field and 33.0% from three-point range. Through the 2023 NBA Playoffs, Embiid has averaged 23.2 points, 10.5 rebounds, and 3.2 assists on 45.2% from the field and 13.3% from three-point range.
In a crucial game for the Sixers, and with no limitations on his minutes, expect Embiid to be dominant on the boards again. Embiid has cleared 11.5 rebounds in 19 of his 66 appearances through the regular season. He's also collected 12 or more rebounds in three of his six post-season appearances.
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More than just a sidekick to Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown has been crucial to the Celtics' success through the regular and post-season. In great shooting form through his matches with the Sixers, Brown's shooting doesn't project to slow down. At BetRivers, Brown is a +102 to clear 2.5 threes made when he faces the Philadelphia 76ers in this Eastern Conference Semi-Final series.
On the season, Brown has had a career year by averaging 26.6 points, 6.9 rebounds, 3.5 assists, and 2.4 threes on 49.1% from the field and 33.5% from the three-point range. Against the Sixers this post-season, Brown has averaged 23.5 points, 4.8 rebounds, 4.5 assists, and 2.3 threes on 57.4% efficiency and 40.9% from three-point range. Brown's last game saw him contribute 23 points, five assists, three rebounds, and three made three-pointers on 62.5% from the field and 37.5% from three-point range.
With control of the series on the line, and the form to clear 2.5 threes in four of his last five games, Brown's shooting can be something to rely on. Brown has hit three or more three-pointers in 29 of his 67 appearances through the regular season. He's also cleared 2.5 threes in six of his ten playoff appearances this year.
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Devin Booker has been sensational through his 2023 NBA Playoff campaign, and he doesn't project to slow down on Tuesday night. While his scoring output has taken headlines, Booker's playmaking has shown how complete his offensive game is. At FanDuel Sportsbook, Booker is a +108 to clear 8.5 assists when he faces the Denver Nuggets in Game 5 of their Western Conference Semi-Final series.
On the season, Booker has averaged 27.8 points, 5.5 assists, and 4.5 rebounds on 49.4% from the field and 35.1% from three-point range. He's also been stellar through the NBA Playoffs, averaging 36.8 points, 7.4 assists, and 5.1 rebounds on 61.7% from the field and 51.0% from the three-point range. He's coming off a win where he contributed 36 points, 12 assists, and six rebounds on 77.8% from the field and 75.0% from three on three made.
Booker has always been a solid playmaker, clearing 8.5 assists in seven of his 53 regular season games - but his recent form is telling. In nine playoff appearances this season, he's collected nine or more assists four times. With the series tied and the chance to take the lead, Booker projects maintaining his passing production as the Nuggets adjust to limit his scoring output.
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Outside of Nikola Jokic, Jamal Murray has been the Denver Nuggets' most capable offensive player - but his three-point shooting has been average in recent games. At FanDuel Sportsbook, Murray is a +108 to clear 2.5 threes when he faces the Phoenix Suns in Game 5 of their Western Conference Second-Round series. While the series moves back to Denver's home court, the Suns' defense has focused on limiting Murray from three after his Game 1 performance.
Through the regular season, Murray has averaged 20.0 points, 6.2 assists, 4.0 rebounds, and 2.6 threes on 45.4% from the field and 39.8% from three-point range. He is coming off a performance where he posted 28 points, seven assists, five rebounds, and one three made on 45.2% efficiency from the field and 28.6% from beyond the arc. In four playoff matches against the Suns, Murray averaged 16.0 points, 7.3 assists, 5.0 rebounds, and 2.0 threes per game on 45.2% from the field and 28.6% from deep.
Murray's three-point shooting ability is undeniable, but he has fallen short of 2.5 threes in 31 of his 65 appearances this season. Through the 2023 NBA Playoffs, Murray has failed to hit three or more threes in five of his nine games. Murray is a great shooter, but the Phoenix defense has adjusted, and he's finding his opportunities in a different space - expect Murray to fall short of 2.5 threes once again.
Christian Jope is a writer, social media strategist, and data analyst. A Queen’s University Alumni, Christian is an author and social media strategist with Raptors Cage, while also working closely with MLSE and Canada Basketball through community-driven events.
Email: [email protected]More info on Christian Jope
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