The Celtics return dwelling from a brief handed extra time loss to the Raptors to host the Miami Warmth, who’re coming off a house win over the Kings. That is the third and ultimate assembly between these two groups within the common season. The Celtics gained the primary sport 95-78 at Miami on November 4 and gained the second sport 122-92 at Boston on January 31. Win or lose this sport, the Celtics will win the sequence between these two groups.
The Celtics are third as soon as once more after the Sixers misplaced to the Bucks on Tuesday. They’re coming off a loss that snapped a 6 sport win streak. They’re 8-2 of their final 10 video games and 26-12 at dwelling. They’re 30-17 in opposition to different Jap Convention groups. They’re now half a sport behind 2nd place Milwaukee and 1 sport behind first place Miami. They’re half a sport forward of 4th place Philadelphia, who misplaced to Milwaukee on Tuesday. They’re additionally 3 video games forward of fifth place Chicago, 3.5 video games forward of sixth place Toronto and 4.5 video games forward of seventh place Cleveland.
The Warmth are first within the East and are coming off a win that snapped a 4 sport dropping streak. They’re 4-6 of their final 10 video games and 21-16 on the highway. They’re 30-16 in opposition to Jap Convention opponents. They’re half a sport forward of 2nd place Milwaukee, 1 sport forward of third place Boston, 1.5 video games forward of 4th place Philadelphia, 4 video games forward of fifth place Chicago and 4.5 video games forward of sixth place Toronto. The standings are nonetheless very shut and there are fairly a couple of huge video games developing between the highest 6 groups that would drastically change the seeding.
The Celtics had their 6 sport win streak snapped by the Raptors on Monday in Toronto because the Celtics performed with out 4 of their starters. That is the primary of a 3 sport dwelling stand for the Celtics. They’ll host Indiana on Friday and Washington on Sunday. They’ll then end the season on the highway at Chicago, Milwaukee after which lastly Memphis. It goes with out saying that this sport and the Milwaukee video games are crucial for playoff implications.
The Warmth had a 4 sport dropping streak snapped once they beat the Kings at dwelling on Monday evening. That is the primary sport of a 3 sport highway journey for the Warmth. They’ll play at Chicago on 4/2 and at Toronto on 4/3. The Raptors get fortunate to host yet one more contender on the second evening of again to again video games. The Warmth will then host Charlotte and Atlanta earlier than ending the season at Orlando.
Al Horford is now not on the Celtics damage checklist so I’m assuming that he will likely be again within the lineup and with Timelord out, will play heart. I’m going to guess that Grant Williams will as soon as once more begin on the 4. Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum are each listed as a sport time determination however their sport notes checklist them as possible. Robert Williams is sadly out and will likely be out for a while.
For the Warmth, they’ve 3 gamers listed as questionable. Caleb Martin injured his calf on Saturday and missed Monday’s sport in opposition to the Kings. He’s questionable for this sport. Duncan Robinson was listed as questionable on Tuesday with a non-covid sickness. Gabe Vincent missed 4 video games with a toe damage however performed 20 minutes on Monday. He’s listed as “iffy” for this sport, no matter meaning.
Possible Celtics Starters
PG: Marcus Sensible
SG: Jaylen Brown
SF: Jayson Tatum
PF: Grant Williams
C: Al Horford
Jaylen Brown (Knee) possible
Jayson Tatum (knee) possible
Robert Williams (knee) out
Possible Warmth Starters
PG: Kyle Lowry
SG: Max Strus
SF: Jimmy Butler
PF: PJ Tucker
C: Bam Adebayo
Caleb Martin (calf) questionable
Duncan Robinson (sickness) questionable
Gabe Vincent (toe) questionable
Jayson Tatum vs Jimmy Butler
Butler is averaging 21.3 factors, 6.0 rebounds, 5.6 assists, and 1.7 steals per sport. He’s capturing 47.5% from the sector and simply 22.1% from past the arc. The Celtics must maintain him out of the paint and guard him intently on midrange photographs. Hopefully Jayson Tatum will likely be again for this sport and can proceed the place he left off because the Jap Convention participant of the week. Butler is an efficient defender and so will attempt to make issues harder for Tatum.
Marcus Sensible vs Kyle Lowry
Lowry retains the Miami offense transferring and is an efficient defender. He’s averaging 13.1 factors, 4.6 rebounds and seven.5 assists per sport. He’s capturing 43.1% from the sector and 36.9% from past the arc. He has had huge video games in opposition to the Celtics up to now and the Celtics must maintain him from getting open photographs and open passing lanes.
Honorable Point out
Al Horford vs Bam Adebayo
Adebayo is averaging 19.1 factors, 10.2 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 1.5 steals per sport. He’s capturing 55.3% from the sector and isn’t a risk on three’s. This matchup will likely be harder with out Robert Williams and Horford and Theis might want to step up their protection to maintain Adebayo from having an enormous sport. The Celtics must maintain him out of the paint and off the boards.
Keys to the Recreation
Protection – Protection is all the time the at the beginning key to successful. The Celtics are 1st with a defensive ranking of 105.9. The Warmth are a troublesome defensive staff additionally at fifth with a defensive ranking of 108.1. The Celtics should make protection a precedence on this sport. The Celtics must particularly guard the three level line because the Warmth are first within the league in 3 level share, capturing 37.4% from past the arc. Of their first sport in opposition to the Warmth, the Celtics held them to 34.6% from the sector whereas the Warmth held the Celtics to 39.7% from the sector. This sport may also doubtless be a defensive showdown and the Celtics should match or exceed the Warmth’s effort on protection in the event that they count on to get a win.
Rebound – As with protection, rebounding will all the time be a key to successful. Groups want the ball to attain and rebounding offers them additional possessions and in addition retains their opponents from getting these possessions themselves. A lot of rebounding is effort and hustle and when the Celtics put out that additional effort to seize rebounds, it normally interprets to different areas of the sport as properly. The Warmth rating 12.8 second probability factors per sport and the Celtics must work onerous on the boards to cease these additional factors.
Be Aggressive – The Celtics have to come back out and be aggressive proper from the opening tip. They must be aggressive on protection, driving to the basket, rebounding, diving for free balls and simply taking part in more durable generally. They should get off to a robust begin and play onerous proper up till the ultimate buzzer. They’ll’t let the Warmth outwork them for any time period. They must play with confidence and play more durable than the Warmth on each ends of the court docket. The very shorthanded Celtics got here near beating a proficient Raptors staff by their grit and hustle. We have to see that very same grit and hustle and much more so in opposition to this Warmth staff.
Keep Targeted – The Celtics have to remain centered on taking part in the appropriate approach. They must concentrate on making crisp passes and on dealing with the ball and never turning it over because the Warmth are seventh with 17.3 factors off turnovers per sport. If the Celtics get sloppy with their passes or ball dealing with, the Warmth will make them pay. Additionally they must concentrate on transferring the ball and transferring with out the ball with the intention to get the most effective photographs and they should keep centered on making these photographs.
Subsequent Man Up – The Celtics will likely be with out Robert Williams for the foreseeable future and they’ll have to determine substitute his invaluable contributions on each ends of the court docket. They must proceed to play with confidence and with coronary heart and hustle and grit. They confirmed that they’ll nonetheless maintain their identification as they virtually beat the Raptors with out Horford, Brown and Tatum. Hopefully these three will likely be again and the Celtics can proceed to be a troublesome, gritty staff that locks down groups on protection.
Bench Play – The Warmth have a troublesome bench with Tyler Herro, Markieff Morris, Duncan Robinson, and Victor Oladipo amongst others. The Celtics reserves confirmed that they’ll play once they virtually beat the Raptors on Monday. The Query is, can they do that on a constant foundation.
Dwelling Recreation – The Celtics are as soon as once more at dwelling. The Warmth aren’t a nasty highway staff with a 21-16 document away from dwelling, however they may have the distractions of being on the highway and having to remain in a lodge and the cheers (and jeers) of the Celtics followers. The Celtics must reward their followers with a sport the place they offer most effort to defeat a rival staff in an important sport.
Officiating – Officiating is all the time an x-factor in each sport. Each crew officiates in a different way. Some name it tight, others allow them to play. Some favor the house staff. Some favor the highway staff. Some simply make unhealthy, head scratching calls. The Celtics want to regulate to the best way the refs name the sport and never let unhealthy calls and no calls take them out of the sport or have an effect on their focus.
In keeping with our mates at DraftKings, the Celtics are a 5.5-point favourite in opposition to the Warmth at TD Backyard on Wednesday evening. Boston comes into presumably their ultimate measuring stick sport earlier than the playoffs properly rested. It’s been per week since we’ve seen Al Horford on the ground and each Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum didn’t journey to Toronto on Monday on the backend of a back-to-back. Regardless of dropping to the Raptors, the Celtics are nonetheless one of many hottest groups within the NBA for the reason that All-Star break and have handed practically each check in opposition to a contender for the reason that begin of the brand new 12 months.
Will probably be a sport of contrasts. The older Warmth are far more deliberate on each ends of the court docket, a bruising squad headlined by previous canine Kyle Lowry, Jimmy Butler, and P.J. Tucker with Bam Adebayo appearing because the solar to satellite tv for pc shooters Duncan Robinson and Tyler Herro. The Celtics have steamrolled groups with scorching capturing from behind the arc (38% over the past fifteen video games), by sharing the ball (27 assists per sport), and a protection that has stymied opponents to 110 factors per 100 possessions.
Boston vs. Miami appears to all the time come all the way down to x-factors. Suppose Tyler Herro within the Jap Convention Finals within the bubble. Boston’s backcourt of Marcus Sensible, Derrick White, and Payton Pritchard have all been trending up over the past two weeks and if they’ll each tamp down the Warmth’s shooters and put stress on the rim on offense, the Celtics ought to be capable of enhance their dwelling document to 27-12.
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