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The Boston Celtics will head back to the City of Brotherly Love for the second time in seven days as they prepare to take on the Eastern Conference-leading Philadelphia 76ers.
Philly won last week’s meeting 106-103 behind 52 combined points from Joel Embiid and Tyrese Maxey. Kristaps Porzingis led Boston with 29 points, while Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Browns combined for 27 points on 27 field goal attempts.
Here, we’ll analyze the betting odds and share our favorite betting picks for the midweek matchup.
Boston is a 3.5-point favorite on the road despite Philly winning last week and being a strong 6-1 in their building.
Odds from BetMGM Sportsbook. Use our BetMGM promo code for a $1,500 welcome bonus.
|Boston Celtics||-3.5 (-110)||-155||Over 223.5 (-110)|
|Philadelphia 76ers||+3.5 (-110)||+125||Under 223.5 (-110)|
The 76ers’ evolution in the post-James Harden and Doc Rivers era has been a joy to watch. Their assists per possession has remained virtually unchanged despite losing the league’s leading assist man, but they are able to flow into their actions quicker and with more ease.
Embiid (33.1 points, 11.7 rebounds, 5.7 assists, 1.9 blocks) and Maxey (28.4 points, 7.0 assists, 42.9% 3PT) are playing like the best duo in the NBA. On top of that, Tobias Harris is averaging the second-most points per game of his career (19.9) while shooting a career-best 57.6% from the field. He’s also become more of a physical presence moving downhill and punished smaller defenders that dare to switch onto him.
Philly also leads the league in fastbreak points (20.3) and is third in points in the paint. Their ability to fly in transition allows them to constantly create mismatches that either lead to blow-bys, post-ups, or trail threes.
The advanced metrics also look favorably upon the Sixers. They’re fourth in offensive rating with a figure (119.1) that is higher than any mark for an entire season in league history, and they’re 10th in defensive rating. That’s while also being third in rebounding percentage and committing a low percentage of turnovers.
On the other side, the Celtics are first in net rating (third offensively, second defensively). They, like the Sixers, are 8-2 straight-up and have won three straight games since the Philly loss a week ago.
Boston likes to get into its offense quickly and holds the ball for an average of 14.1 seconds per possession, which ranks 11th in the league (one spot above the Sixers). Many of their possessions end in threes, in which they’re second in both attempts and makes per game.
Tatum (28.4 points, 8.9 rebounds) has provided a steady scoring presence, while any one of Brown, Porzingis, or Jrue Holiday is capable of being the second (or third or fourth) man on any given night.
The C’s started with Holiday on Embiid last week so that they could switch a bigger defender onto him whenever Philly got into its offense. He ended the game as the primary defender on the reigning MVP on roughly one-third of his possessions and allowed two points on 1-3 shooting and forced three turnovers, according to the NBA’s stats.
The Celtics did not seem rattled by the Sixers when they met, but their usual late-game tricks of making big threes and running in transition didn’t have the same effects as they did in years past.
This Sixers team looks more resilient and impassioned than it has before. Part of that speaks to their early-season success, while another just shows that they enjoy playing the type of basketball they currently are.
Tatum’s going to have to do better than 16 points like he did a week ago. He notched double-doubles in four of seven games this month and averaged 27.9 points and 9.1 rebounds in the process, and he also posted double-doubles in five of his last seven regular-season games against Philly.
The Sixers lost 132-126 to the Pacers in a hard-fought game last night, while the Celtics were resting. But at the same time, the Sixers’ starters shot the lights out of the ball and will be in a comfortable rhythm.
We’ll ride with Philly at +3.5. They’re 8-2 against the spread, while Boston is only 5-3-2, and they’ve been excellent at home. They also believe this is the year they can get over the hump and take down Boston in the playoffs after years of coming up short.
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.More info on Grant Mitchell
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