I missed on my last Raptors pick (-12) as they were defeated at home 103-95 versus the Hornets on Thursday. I am now 12-11 in Raptors free predictions. Tonight the 24-11 Raptors host the 12-22 Boston Celtics.
(12-22) Boston Celtics @ (24-11) Toronto Raptors
Probable starting line-ups:
Boston – Point Guard – Avery Bradley Shooting Guard – Evan Turner C- Tyler Zeller Small Forward – Jae Crowder Power Forward – Jared Sullinger
Toronto – PG – Kyle Lowry SG – Terrence Ross C – Jonas Valanciunas SF – Landry Fields PF – Amir Johnson
Boston – Points Per Game – Jeff Green 17.6 Rebounds Per Game – Jared Sullinger 8.0 Assists Per Game – Jameer Nelson 5.5
Toronto – PPG – Kyle Lowry 20.7 RPG – Jonas Valanciunas 8.5 APG – Kyle Lowry 7.6
Team Scoring: (with league ranking in parentheses)
Boston – Points For (Per Game) – 102.6 (7th) Points Against (Per Game) – 103.7 (26th)
Toronto – PF – 107.7 (3rd) PA – 101.7 (22nd)
The Boston Celtics have lost 8 of their last 10 games. Last night they were defeated in overtime 107-103 at Indiana. Point guard Avery Bradley led the team in scoring with 23 points on 10 of 21 shooting in 40 minutes. Power forward Brandon Bass came off the bench to score 17 points on 7 of 14 shooting in 26 minutes. Reserve center Kelly Olynyk scored 13 points on 5 of 10 shooting in 33 reserve minutes. He also had 6 rebounds. Power forward Jared Sullinger chipped in with 11 points, 5 rebounds, and 4 assists. He was 5 of 13 from the field in 31 minutes. Small forward Jae Crowder scored 11 points and pulled down 7 rebounds in 27 minutes. Shooting guard Evan Turner scored 9 points, grabbed 15 rebounds, and dished out 7 assists. He was a poor 3 of 15 shooting in 38 minutes. The team shot 39.8% from the field, 29.4% from the 3 point (10-34), and 68.8% from the free throw line (11-16). The Celtics were out-rebounded 56-50.The C’s were down 9 at the half but outscored the Pacers 57-48 to force overtime. In overtime they were outscored 13-9. Boston is 4-11 on the road this season. They have lost 5 of their last 6 road games. They have lost by less than 10 points in their last 3 losses. Tonight is the 2nd game of a back to back. They are 2-3 in the 2nd game of a back to back so far this season. Their next game is Monday at home versus New Orleans.
The Toronto Raptors have dropped a season-high 4 games in a row. On Thursday they were beaten 103-95 at home versus Charlotte. Point guard Kyle Lowry led the way with 24 points on 7 of 22 shooting in 36 minutes. He also had 7 assists and 7 rebounds. He was 4 of 10 from the 3 point line and 6 of 7 from the foul line. Reserve shooting guard Louis Williams scored 15 points on 4 of 15 shooting in 28 minutes off the bench. He also had 5 assists and 4 rebounds. Point guard Greivis Vasquez chipped in with 11 points on 4 of 8 shooting in 30 reserve minutes. Center Jonas Valanciunas scored 10 points and had 6 rebounds. The team shot 39.58% from the field, 32.3% from the 3 point line (10-31), and 76% from the free throw line (19-25). The Raptors were out-rebounded 46-42. The team’s downfall was in the 3rd quarter as they were outscored by the Hornets 25-14. They are 14-4 at home this season. Thursday’s home loss was their first home defeat since December 5th. Tonight is the 2nd game of a 6 game home stand. Their next game is Monday at home versus Detroit.
In their first meeting of the season Toronto scored a 110-107 win at Boston. After tonight the 2 teams play 2 more times this season, April 4th at Toronto and April 14th at Boston.
In their last 4 games the Raptors don’t like the same team that won 24 of their first 31 games. I think not having injured scorer DeMar DeRozan is now taking its toll on the team. Since the Celtics played last night they’ll be a little tired and I don’t think the Raptors will suffer the same kind of let-down at home that they did on Thursday. Take the Raptors -11.5 (1.90) (Bet365)
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