Portland Trail Blazers vs Boston Celtics: Predictions, Odds and Roster Notes

How to Watch

What: Portland Trail Blazers at Boston Celtics

Where: TD Garden in Boston, MA

When: Wednesday, February 26th, at 8:00 PM EST

How (TV/Radio): ESPN, NBCSNNW/Blazers Pass, NBC Sports Boston | 98.5 The Sports Hub, Rip City Radio 620

Portland Trail Blazers (Away)

Head Coach: Terry Stotts {All-Time 424-411 | ATL, MIL, POR}

The Portland Trail Blazers are holding on as much as they can to the fourth spot in the Western Conference. With a record of 37-23, the Blazers are just six games from the top but are only two games ahead of the climbing Houston Rockets.

The Blazers have also been excellent in their last ten matches. With a 7-3 record in that time, the Blazers are on an impressive four-game win streak defeating the Golden State Warriors and the Philadelphia 76ers.

The Blazers take on a Celtics team that is sliding, losing it’s first two games of a three-game road trip to the Bulls and Bucks. The Blazers won in their earlier matchup with the Celtics via a concerted team effort. They will look to replicate their success in this matchup.

Boston Celtics (Home)

Head Coach: Brad Stevens {All-Time 258-212 | BOS}

The Boston Celtics are on a slight skid, sporting a record of 37-23 in the Eastern Conference. Not getting off the best start post-All-Star Break, the Celtics have a homestand that they need to take advantage of.

The Celtics have struggled to gain ground in the Eastern Conference as of late. In their last ten matches, the team has accumulated a record of 6-4 but have lost key maths against the Clippers, Lakers, Bucks, and Bulls.

The Celtics have a short three-game homestand starting with the Portland Trail Blazers. Considering 12 of the Celtics’ last 20 games are on the road, they will need to make the most of every home opportunity.

What’s At Stake?

The Boston Celtics have dominated the all-time series with the Portland Trail Blazers. In 113 games all-time, the Celtics lead the Blazers 67-46.

A win for the Celtics would bring them within a game of the Philadelphia 76ers in fourth place.

A win for the Trail Blazers would bring them within a game of the Oklahoma City Thunder who are in third place.

Questions to answer

How did the Blazers hold on against Cleveland?

What is behind the Celtics’ inconsistencies?

We are going to compare the Boston Celtics and the Portland Trail Blazers in an attempt to see who has the advantage in this matchup.

The Blazers Surrendered A 23-Point Lead

The way the NBA is played today is clear. Teams push the pace, opting for a high-octane offense over a grind it out defence. Why? It is easier to score the ball than to stop the ball. That thinking got the Blazers in trouble against the Cavaliers.

After jumping out to a 23-point lead at halftime, Portland was outscored 36-17 in the third. Queued by an excellent Cleveland attack, the Blazers saw their deficit shrink to two-points by the early fourth quarter.

While the Blazers eventually won the match, the fingers point toward Terry Stotts. Enes Kanter provided no resistance at the rim for Cleveland attackers and hot-shooting Seth Curry didn’t re-enter until the minute mark of the third quarter. The Blazers are talented, but they don’t have the depth to suggest they can ignore matchups. They don’t have that luxury against the Trail Blazers.

The Celtics Can’t Seem to Hold a Run

It’s a common saying that every game in the NBA is its own entity. Players enter a workplace of pure competition, with little regard for what happens off the court. The Celtics have battled issues from within and externally this season and have clearly affected them.

The Celtics show flashes of potential. While that form could finally find consistency in the NBA Playoffs, concerns regarding seeding and matchups always creep in. While they hold a positive net rating against Indiana, Philadelphia, and Toronto, the Celtics have oddly struggled against “lesser” teams.

Objectively the Celtics have struggled to defend the transition. Something as simple as finding your matchup and hustling back on defense has been a struggle for the Celtics. Which seems to point toward the internal attitude problems that the Celtics faced earlier this season. One thing is for sure, if they can’t sort their issues now they’ll have little hope in a playoff series.

Portland Trail Blazers Roster Notes

G-F Evan Turner – 24 Feb 2019 – Out (Left Knee Soreness) – Turner has been ruled OUT for Monday’s (Feb 25) game.

Boston Celtics Roster Notes

C Aron Baynes – 22 Feb 2019 – Out (Foot) – Baynes is slated to miss at least two more games (Feb. 23, Feb. 26), according to Brian Robb of the Boston Sports Journal.

Head-to-Head: Damian Lillard (POR) vs Kyrie Irving (BOS)

Damian Lillard

Point Guard | 6-3, 195lb (190cm, 88kg) | Weber State | Exp. 6 Years

25.8 PPG | 6.5 APG | 4.6 RPG | 1.2 SPG | 0.5 BPG | 2.8 TOV | .447 FG% | .368 3P%

Kyrie Irving

Point Guard | 6-3, 193lb (190cm, 87kg) | Duke | Exp. 7 Years

23.8 PPG | 6.9 APG | 4.8 RPG | 1.6 SPG | 0.5 BPG | 2.6 TOV | .496 FG% | .413 3P%

When the Boston Celtics and the Portland Trail Blazers face off, there’s truly only two players that should be considered in this head-to-head matchup. Boston’s Kyrie Irving and Portland’s Damian Lillard are electric point guards that can take over the game on their own. When they meet again, it should be thrilling.

In their last matchup, the Portland Trail Blazers put together a brilliant team effort. That effort was orchestrated by Damian Lillard, who not only posted 19 points and 5 rebounds but also contributed 12 assists to the benefit of 10 Portland players who all contributed in the scoring column. If Lillard can keep his teammates involved, the Blazers may run away with another win.

The Boston Celtics struggled in their last meeting with the Blazers, despite the efforts of Kyrie Irving. There’s not a player on the Blazers that can stop Irving – evidenced by his 21 point, 6 assists, 5 steal night – and there’s little to suggest it will be different on this night. The Celtics, however, will need more of a team effort to overcome the Blazers. Irving recorded 6 assists, but the team as a whole shot 38%. Irving will surely look to create even more easy opportunities for his teammates.

Portland Trail Blazers at Boston Celtics Predictions and Odds

The Boston Celtics are favored over the Portland Trail Blazers by 4, with an over/under of 110.