This Monday, the (5-7) Oklahoma City Thunder travel to Boston, MA to take on the (10-3) Boston Celtics. Tipoff will be at 7:30 p.m. EST at the TD Garden. The last time these two teams met, the Celtics walked away with a 132-123 victory.
The Thunder come into this game after defeating the Toronto Raptors 132-113. Oklahoma City looked great on the offensive side of the floor as they continued to take down open jumpers. They need to carry that momentum into this game if they’re going to challenge the Celtics on the road.
The Boston Celtics enter this matchup after defeating the Detroit Pistons 117-108. Boston got the job done at both ends of the court as they allowed their defense to go on offense. They need to stay efficient at both ends of the ground in this case if they want to beat the Thunder at home.
This game was written/released before last night’s results.
Can the thunder show up on the street?
The Oklahoma City Thunder are currently 12th in the Western Conference rankings as they are (5-5) in the last 10 games played. They’re going to have to get hot if they’re going to get any further into the postseason. On offense, the Thunder score 113.4 points per game and shoot 45.1% from the field. This is the 12th highest score per competition but the 23rd highest team shot percentage. According to dunksandthrees.com, the Thunder have an adjusted offensive rating of 109.4, which is the 24th lowest in the NBA. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander continues to lead the Thunder as he scores 30.5 points per game on 53.9% shooting. He also averages 5.5 assists, which leads the team. However, Oklahoma City has shown they can fight behind the three-point arc. They shot from deep just 31.5%, which is the 29th-highest percentage in the league. The Thunder also continued to drop points on the free throw line, shooting just 75.6% from the stripe. This is the 23rd highest free throw percentage in the NBA, as they need to capitalize on those free rim looks if they want to start stacking wins.
On defense, the Thunder allow 113.9 points per game and their opponents shot from the ground 45.9%. This is the 18th place for most points surrendered per game and 12th for the lowest allowable throwing odds from the field. According to dunksandthrees.com, the Thunder have an adjusted defense rating of 112.1, which is the 18th lowest rating in the NBA. They allowed their opponents to shoot 35.9% from behind the bow while still struggling to close open jumpers on the edge. Oklahoma City also has 45.7 rebounds per game, which is the sixth highest. They need to secure the ball after misses from the rim if they are to prevent the Celtics from scoring second-chance points.
Injury report: Darius Bazley SF (ankle) is listed as questionable. Chet Holmgren C (Foot) is out for the season.
Can the Celtics keep winning?
The Boston Celtics are (7-3) in their last 10 games played and they are on a six game winning streak. They are also second in the Eastern Conference rankings as they are still 0.5 a game behind the Bucks. On offense, the Celtics average 119.5 points per game and shoot 48.4% from the field. This is the highest score per event and the second highest team shot rate. According to dunksandhtrees.com, the Celtics have an adjusted offensive rating of 120.8, which is also the highest in the league. They were extremely efficient with the ball while Jayson Tatum continues to take the lead. He scores 32.3 points per game at 50% shooting from the field. Boston have also demonstrated their ability to get behind the three-point line and put down shots consistently. They shoot from deep 39%, which is the third-highest percentage in the NBA. They have snipers all over the field and they also ran the free throw line business. They don’t miss those shots as they shoot 84.3% from the charity strip. This is the third highest team shooting percentage by line in the league as they cannot miss these opportunities if they want to keep winning.
The Celtics still had some problems on defense. According to dunksandthrees.com, the Celtics have an adjusted defensive rating of 113.2, which is the 22nd highest in the league. They also allow 113.5 points per game and their opponents shot 46% from the field. This is the 16th highest total score given per game and the 13th highest shot percentage. They continue to deny shots close to the edge but their outside defense has been lacking. They put up the 19th highest three-point shot percentage in the league as their opponents rain it down on them. Boston also averages 41.8 rebounds per game, which is 23rd most in the league. They need to clean the glass and secure the ball after misses if they want to prevent the Thunder from scoring second or third chance points.
Injury Report: Malcolm Brogdon PG (hamstring), Horford C (back) AL and Jaylen Brown SG (knee) are listed as doubtful for this game.
Best bets for this game
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Full Game Side Bet
I will beat the Celtics (-10.5) at home in this game as they have six straight wins and feel it in the offensive end of the court. According to dunksandthrees.com, Boston has the highest adjusted offensive rating in the NBA because they were extremely difficult to slow down. They score the most points per game and have the second-highest team field goal percentage. They have shown they can knock down shots from anywhere on the ground as I don’t see the thunder slowing them down. They allow the 18th most points per game and the 13th lowest team shot percentage. Tatum will continue to carry offense as they will score enough points to cover the spread. The Thunder won’t be able to match as they have the 23rd-highest percentage in shooting from the field and the second-lowest percentage in three-point shooting. They couldn’t consistently put down shots as the Celtics will block them and make it very difficult for them to cover the spread. Boston will slow down this game and take the Thunder out of their fast-paced playstyle as they won’t be able to consistently score unless they advance the ball in transition. The Celtics are the better overall team and they are on fire at the moment.
Pick the Boston Celtics and place the points (-10.5)
Prediction: Boston Celtics -10.5
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Overall selection for the entire game
I love the over (227.5) in this matchup as I don’t see much defense being played in this game. The Celtics currently have the 16th most points per game and the 13th highest team shooting average. According to dunksandthrees.com, the Thunder have the seventh highest tempo rating in the league as they will be looking to up the tempo in this game. This gives both teams more chances to score as they will continue to have clean shots on the rim throughout the game. The Celtics have also been hot on the offensive end of the court, as they have the highest adjusted offensive rating in the league. They also score the most points and have the second-highest team shot rate. The Thunder were nothing special at the start of this season and they continue to struggle on defense. They won’t be able to slow down the Celtics as I see them taking the majority of the points in this game. The Thunder will continue to score as Boston’s defense was lacking. They give up the 16th most points per game and have the 22nd lowest adjusted defensive rating. The Celtics have one of the best offenses in the league, but one of the worst defenses.
Take the over (227.5) and expect a big scoring fight in this one.
Forecast: Over 227.5