The Boston Celtics will host the Philadelphia 76ers in game 2 of their Eastern Conference semifinal matchup. The Celtics lead the series 1-0 after beating the Sixers 117-101 in game 1. This is a matchup of historic NBA teams and this should be a tremendous series throughout. The Celtics have home court advantage in this series after finishing as the 2nd seed in the East.
Philadelphia advanced to the second round by defeating the Miami Heat in 5 games in round 1. The Celtics survived their opening round series against the Milwaukee Bucks, advancing with a victory in game 7. The Sixers are road favorites for game 2, and are -3.5 over the Boston Celtics.
Celtics Face Adversity; Overcome Once Again
The Boston Celtics announced that guard Jaylen Brown would not play in game 1. This appeared to be a huge blow for the Celtics, but it didn’t slow Boston down. The Boston trio of Al Horford, Jayson Tatum, and Terry Rozier combined to score 83 points for the Celtics in their game 1 win. Terry Rozier has been terrific of late for the Celtics and made 7 threes in game 1.
With Brown expected to return for the Celtics in game 2, Boston will create matchup problems for Philadelphia. Philadelphia came into the series as the better offensive team, but the Celtics proved that they can score when needed. The Celtics will have to figure out a way to stop Joel Embiid in game 2 if they want to take a 2-0 series lead.
76ers Must Find Their Groove Again
The 76ers have been playing at a high level for the past 2 months, but they did not look like the same team in game 1. Perhaps the playoff pressure got to the young Sixers, but whatever the case, they must bounce back in game 2. Philadelphia has to be better on the defensive end for the rest of this series. The Sixers gave up a whopping 17 three pointers in game 1, and Boston shooters were getting open looks all night long.
Young stars Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons played well in game 1, but got little help from their talented shooters. Embiid scored 31 points and grabbed 13 rebounds in the loss. Expect Boston to clamp down on Embiid in game 2, putting even more pressure on the Sixers to make shots from deep. Philadelphia was just 5-26 from the 3 point line in the loss.
Sixers Adjust, Even the Series
Boston was able to use their home crowd to gain an advantage in game 1. The Celtics played inspired basketball, and also shot the ball extremely well. The Celtics will look to continue to make things difficult for the Sixers in game 2. The return of Jaylen Brown adds another great defender into the mix.
Philadelphia looked out of sorts in game 1, and must regroup if they want to steal home court advantage. The Sixers lost their composure at times, and also really struggled to knock down shots. Philadelphia has too much talent and is too good to play another bad game. The Sixers will bounce back in a big way in game 2, and will even the series. Bet the Philadelphia 76ers -3.5 over the Boston Celtics.
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