Two of the top teams in the east and west will be squaring off against each other on Wednesday night when the New Orleans Pelicans take the road trip up to take on the Boston Celtics.
The name of the game for the Pelicans has been healthy this season, and they have plenty of injury concerns for their entire roster as the halfway point creeps up.
Brandon Ingram has been sidelined for most of the year, while Zion Williamson is experiencing another hamstring injury that will keep him out of the coming weeks.
Despite it all, they still have a great record and a solid unit coming off the bench to make up for it.
Boston has been mostly healthy and continues to cool off from their other-worldly start to the year. There is still plenty of talent from the best duo in the NBA.
With the big-name players that will be likely missing from the Pelicans in this game, the Celtics are favored on their home court at -10.
Where does all of the scoring come from without Williamson and Ingram?
Just because a couple of star players are out does not mean the Pelicans don’t have a fight in them for this game. There are a number of veterans on this team that are backed up by strong young guys to do some damage.
CJ McCollum has been instrumental in leading this team, and that was secretly one of the best trade acquisitions last season.
His presence in crunch time is vital, and he gels well with the rest of the guards because he can be the main ball handler and distribute or play more in his natural position to score.
If you are looking for a sneaky contender, the Pelicans are it.
Bouncing back to the top of the rankings
Opening the season, the Celtics came out on a mission after their NBA Finals loss to the Golden State Warriors.
It was nice to see some fight out of them. When a team gets punched in the mouth like they did, they can always choose whether or not to get back up.
A rocky December brought the Celtics back down to earth, so hopefully, 2023 gives them the chance to play at that high level again.
Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown have been sensational as a duo together and show why the Celtics are the top team in the Eastern Conference.
Pelicans @ Celtics Betting Prediction
The Pelicans are going to be leaning heavily on CJ McCollum to carry most of the ball handling and scoring load for their team.
There is plenty to like here with them, but the Celtics are just better overall and will be on their home court.
With no reason not to take Boston at home, you can trust that Brown and Tatum will have big nights scoring the ball and carry this team to another victory.
Take the Celtics at -10 over the Pelicans, despite the inevitable big performance coming from McCollum.
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