Two mammoths of the Eastern Conference will go head-to-head anew this Sunday, with the Boston Celtics and the Philadelphia 76ers playing a potential preview of the East Finals.
Catch this game live on Sunday, February 26, at 9:30 AM, Manila time
Away: Boston Celtics (43-17/19-10 Away)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Marcus Smart
- SG: Jaylen Brown
- SF: Jayson Tatum
- PF: Al Horford
- C: Robert Williams III
The Celtics started a three-game road trip with a win on Friday, as they outlasted the Indiana Pacers in a barnburner to score a 142-138 OT victory. It was also the first game of Boston since the All-Star Weekend, so it appears things are going smoothly still for the Celtics, who have won six of their last seven games – a stretch that also includes their 106-99 home win against Philly earlier this month.
Neither Jayson Tatum nor Jaylen Brown had to explode offensively to take down the Sixers in that game, as six Celtics players scored at least 12 points, including the pair of Malcolm Brogdon and Sam Hauser, who both came off the bench and scored 15 and 19 points, respectively. Boston’s bench isn’t exactly among the highest-scoring in the league this season, but with Brogdon there along with Derrick White, Boston’s depth could be the difference-maker in this matchup against the Sixers. Take note that when Boston also beat the Sixers, 127-117, at home way back in October, the Celtics’ backups came up with 34 points to just 10 by Philadelphia’s relievers.
Boston is 7-3 ATS in its last 10 outings.
Home: Philadelphia 76ers (39-19/24-8 Home)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: James Harden
- SG: De’Anthony Melton
- SF: Tobias Harris
- PF: P.J. Tucker
- C: Joel Embiid
Not even a long break could cool off the Sixers. In their first game since the All-Star break, the Sixers turned away Ja Morant and the Memphis Grizzlies in a 110-105 home win on Friday. Philadelphia, which extended its win streak to five games after that win, fed off the brilliance of their trio of James Harden, Joel Embiid, and Tobias Harris to fend off the Grizzlies. Harden posted 31 points, Embiid went off for 27, and Harris recorded 20. Harris struggled mightily in the most recent meeting with the Celtics, but he’s on an upswing of late with 33 points on over 50 FG% in the last two Sixers games.
Philly’s defense shone the most versus the Grizzlies and it could be the team’s top weapon against the Celtics. Memphis entered Friday’s contest averaging 116.1 PPG on 47.0 FG% but put up over 10 points fewer and went just 39.1 FG% opposite the Sixers. Philadelphia is third in the league as of this writing with just 110.4 points allowed per game and sixth with 111.6 opponents’ FG%.
Philadelphia is 5-0 ATS in its last five games as the home team.
Spread: The Sixers (+1.5) cover the spread.
Over/Under: The total (225.5) hits the Under.