The Boston Celtics and Golden State Warriors meet for the first time this season in a West Coast showdown in San Francisco. It’s time to continue our NBA odds series and make a Celtics-Warriors prediction and pick.
The Celtics hold a record of 8-4 both overall and against the spread. Boston is coming off a one-point loss to the Los Angeles Lakers.
The Warriors stand at 11-9 overall, but they are 10-10 against the spread. In the Warriors’ most recent game, they blew out the Detroit Pistons in Chase Center.
Here’s how sportsbooks have set the opening Celtics-Warriors odds.
NBA Odds: Celtics-Warriors Odds
Boston Celtics -2.5 (-115)
Golden State Warriors +2.5 (-105)
Over 226.5 Points (-105)
Under 226.5 Points (-115)
Why The Celtics Could Cover The Spread
Despite a roster that is stacked with All-Star potential, the Celtics haven’t quite hit their stride yet largely due to injuries.
The Celtics have played a total of two games with Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, and Kemba Walker all active.
While all three are set to play tonight, Boston will be without Marcus Smart, who suffered a calf injury in Boston’s loss against the Lakers.
The Celtics will miss Smart on the defensive end, but they should still have enough of a presence with Brown and Tatum to pressure the Warriors around the perimeter.
Boston has been excellent defending the three-pointer, allowing the fourth least three-point makes in the league. To get a win on Tuesday night, they’ll have to continue this effort and force the Warriors to beat them in the paint.
On the offensive end, the Celtics have a leg up on Golden State. While the Warriors are more one-dimensional, this Celtics team has multiple guys who can go for 30 on any given night.
Brown and Tatum combine for 53 points per game, and even a solid Warriors defense will be tested by the duo.
Tatum will be key in this matchup, and the Celtics have leaned on him in his return. They are 8-5 against the spread when he plays, and as the leader of the team, I expect him to step up and shoulder the offensive load for a team that badly needs a win here.
Why The Warriors Could Cover The Spread
While Golden State’s offense dominates the highlight reels, it’s actually the Dubs defense that has been more impressive this season. The Warriors have actually been a solid team on the defensive end this season, ranking two spots higher than the Celtics in defensive rating.
Golden State has held the opponents to the second-lowest overall field-goal percentage and the third-least field goals in the league.
Much of this has to do with the return of Draymond Green.
The Warriors were lit up in the first four games of the season that Green missed, giving up an average of 124 points per game.
Since his return, Golden State has held their opponent below their scoring average in eleven of the sixteen matchups.
Green is probable to play in this matchup, and the Warriors could continue their strong defensive streak against a Celtics team that is a mid-tier offensive unit.
Final Celtics-Warriors Prediction & Pick
After a heartbreaking loss to the Lakers on their home floor, I think the Celtics will come out with a vengeance in San Francisco tonight. Even without Marcus Smart, this Boston team is much deeper than the Warriors, who depend on Curry for a huge chunk of their offense. I’ll back either Tatum or Brown to have a big night and lead the Celtics to a bounce-back win.
FINAL SCORE PREDICTION: BOS 114, GSW 107 (BOS -2.5)