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Cavaliers vs. Celtics Game Two Prediction: C's Look for 2-0 Lead

Written by: Grant Mitchell
Published May 9, 2024
12 min read

The Boston Celtics are back at home for Game Two of the Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday evening, two days after they won Game One by 25 points.

The C’s have been the most dominant team of the playoffs thus far, outscoring their opponents by an average of 18.9 points per 100 possessions. They’re also 40-5 in their building in the regular and postseason combined.

The Cavs are a team defined by their inconsistent play, whether that be due to injuries, shooting streaks, or their struggles to win on the road. They are massive underdogs in Game Two and the series overall and need to steal home court to instill any sort of belief in their ability to be competitive in this series.

Here, we will go over the betting odds and share our favorite pick for Game Two of the Cavaliers vs. Celtics series.

Cavaliers vs Celtics Prediction

Cavaliers vs. Celtics Game Two Betting Odds for Thursday, May 9

The Cavs are 44-45-1 (49.4 percent) against the spread and 11-14 (44 percent) ATS as a road underdog. They covered in just three of eight playoff games thus far and were 13 points off the 12-point line in Game One.

The Celtics are 46-42 (52.3 percent) ATS and 25-20 (55.6 percent) ATS as a home favorite. They covered in five of six playoff games and two of four regular and postseason meetings with the Cavaliers.

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TeamsSpreadMoneylineTotal
Cleveland Cavaliers+13.5 (-110)+500Over 212.5 (-105)
Boston Celtics-13.5 (-110)-1000Under 212.5 (-115)

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Cavaliers vs. Celtics Game Two Prediction

Cleveland Cavaliers Preview

Cleveland has not done anything to suggest that it will trouble Boston in the series. They have the second-worst offensive rating in the playoffs (100.3) and shot below 29 percent from three-point land, which is also the second-worst mark in the playoffs.

The loss of Jarrett Allen to a rib injury also caused them to fall to 14th of 16 teams in rebound rate and removed their ability to get cheap baskets around the rim and collapse the defense, leading to kick-outs to open shooters.

Nearly all of the team’s offensive burden fell onto Donovan Mitchell in Allen’s absence. To his credit, he did his part, averaging 40.7 points over his last three games and helping the team rally from an 18-point deficit in Game Seven against the Orlando Magic—but he can’t win a game, much less a series, on his own.

Darius Garland and Max Strus’ disappearing acts have been especially damaging to Cleveland. Garland is capable of creating his own shot or getting downhill and finding the open man, yet he averaged just 14.8 points and 5.4 assists and allowed Celtics players to shoot 73.3 percent from the field as the nearest defender in Game One. 

Strus, meanwhile, shot 30.2 percent from three-point land in the postseason and only managed five points and two rebounds in the opening duel. He needs to do his part to help the Cavs stay in contact from the perimeter, or else they essentially have no chance.

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Boston Celtics Preview

The Celtics did a great job keeping the majority of their offensive actions away from Evan Mobley, who has the ability to wreak havoc at the rim, in Game One. They were able to do this by spacing the floor and because of the absence of Allen, who can also occupy space around the rim.

Even without the injured Kristaps Porzingis, the Celtics look as dominant as ever. They won the rebounding battle 55-38 and made seven more threes than the Cavs in Game One despite Jayson Tatum continuing to struggle on offense (18 points, 7-19 FG). 

The Celtics’ 15.5 threes per game lead the playoffs and have come at an efficient clip (38.6 percent). They also improved their ball security and rank third in assist-to-turnover ratio, which will be important for them in the later rounds,

Jaylen Brown and Derrick White were both sensational in Game One and scored a combined 57 points. They lead the C’s in playoff scoring averages (24.3 and 22.8 points, respectively) and are taking advantage of Cleveland’s small backcourt.

It’s scary to imagine how well Boston will play when Tatum inevitably gets going. There will always be concerns about their end-of-game play in close scenarios, but those will never be dealt with if they just continue to blow teams out.

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Cavaliers vs. Celtics Game Two Betting Pick

It wasn’t a surprise to see a more well-rested Celtics team blow out the Cavs, who were fresh off a Game Seven, in the series opener.

The question now becomes whether Cleveland will actually put up a good fight in Game Two. They’re going to need much more production from the players around Mitchell, more threes, and to find a way to involve Mobley more in the defensive game plan.

Nothing in these playoffs leads us to believe the Cavs will be competitive in the series. Granted, they can be at their best, but they just have not been anywhere close to that.

How to Watch Cavaliers vs. Celtics Game Two

  • When: Thursday, May 9 @ 7:00 p.m. CT/ET

  • Where: TD Garden, Boston, MA

  • TV: ESPN

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AUTHOR

Grant Mitchell

538 Articles

Grant is a sports and sports betting journalist who prides himself on delivering breaking news and insightful analyses of the industry. Grant graduated from Virginia Tech in 2021 and is feverishly pursuing his ambitions in the sports betting field.

In his free time, Grant can be found passionately watching sports, doing a workout, or searching for adventure with his friends.

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