Two Eastern Conference teams with playoff hopes for the season are clashing today, when the East leaders Boston Celtics (34-11), who want to return to the winning ways, are hosting the Philadelphia 76ers (20-20), who want to turn their latest victory into a streak and get into the top-8.
Date/Time: 01-18-2018, 19:00 EDT
Spread: Boston Celtics -4.5
Celtics have a 34-11 record (27-16-2 against the spread) so far this season and currently sit in the first place of the East. In their last game they saw a seven-game winning streak getting snapped by losing at home against the Pelicans in overtime with a 113-116 score, not beating the odds. They are led in scoring by Kyrie Irving with 24.1 ppg, adding 5 assists per game. He is followed by Jaylen Brown with 14.3 ppg and 5.6 rebounds, while Al Horford adds 13.4 ppg and team highs both in rebounding with 7.9 and in assists made, with 5.3 per game.
Top Basketball BookmakersSixers have a 20-20 record (22-17-1 against the spread) so far this season and currently sit in the 9th place of the East. They have won five of their last six and in their last game they won at home against the Raptors with a 117-111 score, beating the odds. They are led in scoring by Joel Embiid with 23.8 ppg, adding a team high 10.8 rebounds per game. He is followed by JJ Redick with 17.3 ppg, while the rookie Ben Simmons adds 16.8 ppg, 8 rebounds and a team high 7.3 assists per game.
In their previous meeting one week ago, Celtics won on the road with a 103-114 score. Celtics are 18-6 at home, while Sixers are 10-10 on the road. Sixers are better offensively, scoring 108.6 ppg to Celtics’ 103.2, while Celtics have the second-best defense in the league, allowing 98.1 ppg to Sixers’ 108.2. Sixers have a better field goal percentage, shooting with 46.2% to Celtics’ 44.9%, while Celtics have a better 3-point percentage, shooting with 36.9% to Sixers’ 35.6%. Sixers lead the league in rebounding, grabbing 47.6 to Celtics’ 44.7 and are third-best in assists made (25.9 to 22.2), while Celtics are better in turnovers committed (14.1 to 18). Celtics are the absolute favorite in this game and Vegas odds give them a -4.5 spread which they are expected to beat for the home victory today.
Philadelphia 76ers vs Boston Celtics Prediction: Boston Celtics -4.5 (-107)