The Celtics and Grizzlies are set to square off in Orlando, Florida, this evening at 5:00 PM ET.
For the Celtics, this game won’t mean too much. They are all but locked into the #3 seed in the East, so this will be about continuity. They are perhaps playing spoiler for a team hanging on for dear life after a 1-5 start to gameplay within the bubble.
For their top guys, they’ll likely not play a full dose of minutes, but enough to get their reps in for the game. Like we’ve seen with various teams, they will try to incorporate every active player in a significant way.
The one win that Memphis picked up against OKC is huge for them right now. That leaves them needing just one win in their next two games to secure their spot in the play-in tournament. And even a 2-6 record could be good enough for them to stay at #8.
Ja Morant is ready to show out and lead the young Grizz tonight.
The Celtics are four-point favorites on Tuesday, with the over/under set at 224.5.
Boston Trying to Keep it Rolling
At 47-23, this has been a fantastic season for the Celtics. They got a new starting point guard and changed things up at the center position. But that has only served to make them an even better team. All of the moves made last offseason have helped lead them to this point.
Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown have been stars this year, and Kemba Walker was the starting PG for the East in the midseason classic. They can defend exceptionally well and force teams to take a lot of uncomfortable shots. It helps to have a guy like Marcus Smart who can effectively guard all five positions on one end, and then bury the three-ball on the other.
The Celtics’ ultimate goal will be to get to the NBA Finals, sneaking past Toronto and Milwaukee. Both are incredibly tall tasks, so we’ll see if they are up for it. They try to play spoiler against Memphis tonight.
Desperate Grizzlies Looking for Win
At 1-5, they have impressed absolutely nobody in the bubble. They were upset at the initial play-in format idea, but given how they look now, a potential slip to #9 would keep them in. They may want to be thanking their lucky stars that a 2-5 mark could be enough.
Ja Morant and a lot of the young guys have played good ball and helped them to overcome the loss of Jaren Jackson Jr. Anthony Tolliver has stepped into the starting role nicely, with Gorgui Dieng adding quality bench minutes. Grayson Allen looks like a legitimate NBA standout with how he has performed in his extended minutes here too.
Jonas Valanciunas will have a size advantage against Theis initially, so he’ll likely look to dominate.
Good day for Boston. They claim win #48 and send the Grizzlies to yet another bubble defeat.
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