Nets vs Celtics odds
|time||3:30 p.m. Eastern time|
The moment has finally come for the Brooklyn Nets and the Boston Celtics.
Throughout the year, the curling performance has been sub-par with a host of explanations for her lackluster record. Kyrie Irving was ineligible to play due to vaccine requirements. Then he joined the team but could not play at home. Then Kevin Durant was injured. Then James Harden checked out.
There is a constant reluctance that this team did not need to care about the regular season, and that this team does not need continuity or consistency; I just needed to turn on the match lights.
Irving and Durant are healthy, unlike last year, and while Ben Simmons may or may not play by the end of the series, they have a chance to show that chemistry, culture and defense don’t matter. What matters is the stars, and they have two.
The Celtics turned their season, then went on to turn it around, then from good to great, then from great to elite and finally the best team in the league over the last four weeks.
However, it’s hard to believe that this team has suddenly become This is amazing Good apparently overnight. Are they really title contenders? juggernaut? Just like this?
This series has massive drama and huge implications for both teams. Let’s bet on Celtics-Nets.
Can networks create an adequate defense?
Ben Simmons stays out until at least the fourth game of the series, Joe Harris is out for the season, and Seth Curry is nursing his bad ankle but will play.
The Nets lost their season series to the Celtics 1-3, but of course, the Nets’ disaster season should add some context. The only time Durant and Irving were available was the last game on March 6.
There isn’t necessarily a huge advantage in this game or series for Brooklyn beyond the obvious one: no one can stop Durant or Irving from scoring. These guys miss or miss, and they usually don’t.
Boston uses a substitution scheme to slow the ball’s movement. The Nets are ninth in the league in scoring against switching defenses, despite all the absences. With Durant and Irving on the ground, their points per possession mark go from .995 to 1.005 which would be the fourth best player in the league.
The question, of course, is about their defense. There are two approaches to curling defensively. The first is a little ball, the option to switch all with Nic Claxton. Over the last 15 games, the Nets defense has posted a defensive rating of 105.2 with Claxton on the field, and a defensive rating of 116.8 with him off the field.
Their counter is the starting unit with Andre Drummond. This has a huge advantage in the series with the third exit of Robert Williams. Neither Al Horfords nor Daniel Theiss can handle Drummond’s volume on the glass. Horford is still an outstanding defender, but he has never been as strong or agile as he once was.
The biggest factor in this will be Bruce Brown. Think of Brown as a Marcus smart counter. He can switch against many defenders, he’s great in a short formation if the Celtics double Irving or Durant, and he can attack and score on his own.
If the Celtics try and get too small, the Brown next to Durant is an excellent counter in the front zone. If the Celtics get big, Brown could serve as a security guard for Smart.
Durant’s defense will be crucial in this series. Jason Tatum has 44% eFG this season and 41% in the last three seasons against Durant.
Meanwhile, Durant and Irving have to force the double teams to Boston. Celtics are ready. The team has doubled the isolation and is the fifth most in the league. But when that happens, it unlocks footage of Seth Curry, Brown, and Patti Mills on the ocean.
If Mills and Curry hit, it would swing the offensive edge dramatically toward Brooklyn.
However, nets take more mid-range shots than anything else, third in the league:
Boston holds its opponents to the second lowest percentage point in the league. If you think the Nets are going to strike because of their talent, Brooklyn has the edge. If you thought the Celtics could tease them, love Boston.
What would Boston look like without Timelord?
With Williams likely to be eliminated from the entire first round, Boston will have to play Al Horford and Daniel Theis for this match. Brown was not wrong when he said that the nets were eager to attack those encounters.
Bruce Brown: “Not having Robert Williams is huge. Now we can attack Horford and Tess.”
Matt Brooks (@MattBrooksNBA) April 13, 2022
Horford has really struggled in the substitution against Brooklyn this season. The Nets fired 70% of the eFG%, scoring 31 points on 25 holdings when Horford turned.
Horford is much better at covering projection, but you can’t give up that much space for Irving and Durant. So they will either try to shoot stars on the level, which will make the butt and rim more difficult to contain, or switch it up and live with it.
If you want to bet on Celtics, you have to believe in Celtics crime. As I mentioned, Tatum has struggled against Durant this season and on his career even with the 54-point game on March 6.
Another thing worth noting from the big win on March 6 for Boston: They’ve been outdone on every take in pick-and-roll, singles, cuts, and beyond. Boston was +5 in the spin stops and +14 in the transition. That was the game there.
If Brooklyn returns to cut the transition points, it could be a tough game. Boston offense has been massive lately, but keeping up with Brooklyn is a challenge.
Choose the Nets Celtics
At the time of writing, money and tickets are coming to Brooklyn on Action Network, but we’ve tracked five sharpshooters in Boston (you can see the sharpest action, big money bets, and pro systems for all Sunday games here).
It makes me nervous, but I still like Brooklyn +4.5 here. The Celtics were the 6-point favorites in the March 6 game, and the Nets learned a lot about their rotation, and only pushed that game through thanks to the transfer edge, when things slow down in the playoffs.
Williams is the big differentiator here. I think it’s worth more on the spread, specifically against Brooklyn, than the line accounts.
The nets are 5-5 in a row and 6-4 this season with Durant as a dog. I love Nets to 4. I don’t have a liking on the total, but this trend stands out.
Friends are not allowed to bet….
The #1 game series of # I grow More than total!!
The #1 game series of the NBA Playoffs is now 60% under
When the total is 217 or higher….
O/U is 14-44-2 (76%) down!! pic.twitter.com/RbQ36xxDSF
– Ralph Michaels (@CalSportsLV) April 15, 2022
I’m going to talk about that trend here, especially in a heavy-hitter game, and grind it.
picking Networks +4.5 | under 224