Boston Celtics vs Indiana Pacers betting tips and predictions for Friday’s NBA game on NBA TV. The Celtics and Pacers square off at TD Garden tonight with their regular season series tied at 1-1. Read on for all our free predictions and betting tips.
The Celtics return home following a 6-game road trip which they wrapped up with a 132-109 win over Sacramento. It was a surprisingly dominant performance by the Cs considering they were just 4-2 SU over their last 6 games before the win. Jayson Tatum finally put up numbers by scoring 36 points on an efficient 14-for-25 from the field.
The win has kept the Celtics in 2nd place in the East, but with the 76ers lurking behind them with just a half game back, they cannot afford to relax. The oddsmakers have them as 11.5 point favorites tonight, which isn’t surprising considering they are 15-4 SU in their last 19 home games and have beaten the Pacers 7 times in the last 8 games at TD Garden.
Indiana’s biggest question mark ahead of tonight’s game will be the status of Tyrese Haliburton who has been in and out of the line-up lately. His absences has all but ruined their chances of making the postseason, they’re 1.5 games behind the Chicago Bulls for the 10th spot with just 9 games to go. On the road they’re just 6-14 SU in their last 20 games and have won only once in their last 8 visits to Boston.
That 1 win happened earlier this season back in late December, Haliburton had 33 points and 8 assists in that game. Both games were really close between the two teams, decided by 5 and 4 points (after OT), so I’m really hoping the Pacers can keep things close tonight as well. They’ve been able to cover in 5 of their last 6 against the Celtics and in 8 of their last 11 vs Eastern Conference teams.
It’s never easy coming back home from a long road trip, teams often come out a bit flat to start games. I’m counting on exactly that to happen here. If Haliburton plays the Pacers can even pull off the total upset here, but let’s back them to cover this massive spread instead.
Boston Celtics vs Indiana Pacers Predictions & Odds
Judging by the 2 meetings earlier this season there won’t be a lot of defense played here. These two teams have seen the over cash 7 times in their last 10 meetings with an average of 231 points per game scored. Both have trended towards high scoring games lately – the Pacers are 6-3 on the O/U in their last 9, while Boston is 12-6 in their last 18. When playing at home the Celtics do like to play a faster pace, that’s evident from their record of 23-12 on the O/U in those games.
They’ve consistently been in the top 3 in offensive efficiency this season, right now they’re scoring 115.6 points per 100 possessions which is good for 3rd in the NBA. Indiana’s defense is near the bottom in efficiency with teams averaging 114.5 points per 100 possessions against them. They won’t be able to withstand the Celtics onslaught here, so I believe backing the points is the correct call here.