This matchup would normally be one to look forward to on the calendar. Unfortunately, one team is struggling, which could make for a less-than-appealing basketball game. The Los Angeles Clippers have been up and down but are healthy heading into the break. The Boston Celtics have been one of the more disappointing teams in the NBA this season. They’re starting to gain momentum but may be without SG Jaylen Brown (knee). Let’s take a look at the lines and make some picks.
Update: Jaylen Brown (knee) is available to play.
Pick ATS: Clippers -4
So this is more of a pick in anticipation of Brown being sidelined. I’d feel comfortable with this spread even if Brown ends up playing. The Clippers are a bit hard to gauge at this point. A close loss to the Milwaukee Bucks, a close loss to the Brooklyn Nets, wins over the Memphis Grizzlies and Washington Wizards. If Brown is out, this will be a tough spot for the Celtics without Marcus Smart. Somebody who can’t guard Kawhi Leonard or Paul George will end up doing so. The Celtics don’t have as much depth in the frontcourt either, so Serge Ibaka, Ivica Zubac and Marcus Morris should cause problems as well.
Player Prop: Serge Ibaka O6.5 Rebounds (+112)
As was mentioned above, the Celtics really only have Daniel Theis and Tristan Thompson as big bodies. Theis has been inconsistent and Thompson is the only other guy cleaning the glass. If this spread holds true, the game should be tight. If not, it’ll mean the Clippers dominated enough early on. Ibaka has hit the over on this line in four of the past six games. It’s not a sure thing by any means but we get plenty of juice on a starting center who should play over 30 minutes.
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