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The 3-seed Philadelphia 76ers (1-2) are going to be in real trouble if they don’t win Game 4 at home vs. the 2-seed Boston Celtics (2-1). Philly looks gassed and the Celtics are overwhelming the Sixers.
Game 3 started with a celebration of 76ers big Joel Embiid winning the 2022-23 NBA MVP. But, it ended Boston beat the brakes off Philadelphia 114-102 Friday.
Sixers guards James Harden and Tyrese Maxey were awful, SF Tobias Harris got into foul trouble early, which cost me a bet on his Over 14.5-point prop, and Embiid’s 30 points weren’t nearly enough.
Celtics All-Stars Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown combined for 50 points 18-of-38 shooting with 17 rebounds and 10 assists. Boston C Al Horford cashed an Over 7.5-point bet for me, scoring 17 points on 5-of-7 from 3.
Truth be told, I hate both of these teams and I understand if you faded me here. I’ve whiffed in the 1st three games of this series and probably should sit out Game 4.
However, I have Wells Fargo Championship golf bets to sweat Sunday and I’ve convinced myself that Celtics-76ers Game 4 will go UNDER THE TOTAL.
Celtics At 76ers Game 4 odds (DraftKings Sportsbook)
- Tip-off: 3:30 p.m. ET.
- Venue: Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia.
‘Nut-crunching’ time in Philadelphia
The Sixers have their backs against the wall down 1-2 and going back to Boston for Game 5. In these playoffs, there have been three Game 4s with a home ‘dog that lost Game 3. The totals are 0-3 Over/Under (O/U) with a -14.2 O/U margin.
Essentially, this is a do-or-die game that the 76ers need like blood. Those types of playoff games tend to be tighter and have a slower tempo. Also, playoff officiating could drag this total down.
Philly’s two best players thrive at getting to the charity stripe. But, the refs tend to swallow the whistle in the playoffs. Boston is 4th in defensive FT/FGA rate in the postseason and was 3rd in the regular season.
‘Sketch-ball’ line movement
Celtics-76ers opened with a 215-point total and has been lowered to 213.5 as of 11:30 a.m. ET Sunday morning. Yet, according to VSIN, roughly 85% of the action is on the Over at DraftKings Sportsbook.
Whether you want to deem this as the sportsbooks “laying a trap” or “booking faces,” the sharp side appears to be the UNDER. Plus, the sharpest shop in town — Pinnacle Sportsbook — lists this total at 213 as of the time of writing.
76ers needs to slow the tempo
The pace of this Celtics-76ers series is 92.2 possessions per 48 minutes and the average pace in these NBA playoffs is 97.4. Philadelphia is averaging the 3rd-slowest pace this postseason and injuries are slowing the Sixers down.
Embiid and Harden aren’t trying to run up and down the court. Embiid missed Game 1 with a knee injury and Harden has been battling an Achilles injury since mid-March.
The broadcasting crews for the Celtics-76ers notice Embiid looks tired and Harden’s conditioning is always in question. It would make sense for the Sixers to slow it down since they don’t have the 3-point shooting to keep up with Boston.
Per CleaningTheGlass.com (CTG), the Celtics are 14th in fastbreak frequency out of 20 teams in these playoffs and the 76ers are 18th. Embiid and Harden lead Philly in usage rate and the Sixers are playing through their stars in this must-win Game 4.
BET: UNDER 213.5 (-110) in Celtics-76ers Game 4, down to 213
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One CommentLeave a Reply
OVERtime–death to the under bettor.