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Boston Celtics vs. San Antonio Spurs
NBA: Saturday, November 9, AT&T Center, San Antonio, Texas, 5:00 PM ET
Since a 107-93 loss at the Philadelphia 76ers in the opener, the Boston Celtics have won all their games. They are riding a six-game winning streak and will try to make it seven when they visit the 5-3 San Antonio Spurs on Saturday night. During their streak, the Celtics went 4-1-1 ATS, coming off an easy 108-87 victory at the Charlotte Hornets. On the other side, the Spurs are 2-6 ATS on the season after a 121-112 win over the Oklahoma City Thunder as 5-point favorites.
These two interconference foes will meet each other for the first time this season. The Spurs have won 14 of their last 15 meetings with the Celtics including both last season’s contests. Likewise, the Celtics haven’t beat the Spurs in San Antonio since 2011.
The Celtics are marching onBoston continues to torture its rivals. The Celtics thrashed off the Hornets at Spectrum Center this past Thursday, leading in double-digits for most of the game. They put on a terrific defensive performance. The Hornets made only 38.4% of their field goals and 19.4% of their 3-pointers while turning the ball over 21 times. The Celtics shot 43.0% from the field and had 29 assists, while coach Brad Stevens used all his 13 players. Jayson Tatum led the way with 23 points and nine rebounds. Gordon Hayward added a double-double of 20 points and 10 boards. Kemba Walker returned to Charlotte for the first time as a Celtic and scored 14 points on 4-for-12 shooting.
"It was special," Walker said. "Just to be back here and the amount of love I have been getting today and leading up to this day. It made me really emotional. I was trying to hold it in, but I couldn't. I knew I wasn't going to be able to."
The Celtics defensive rating is the 3rd-best in the league. They are allowing 100.4 points per 100 possessions. Boston’s defense ranks 6th in the league in field-goal percentage (42.1%) and 7th in assists allowed per 100 possessions (20.6). On the other side of the ball, the Celtics’ offensive rating is 15th in the NBA (108.1). The Celtics are making 43.9% of their field goals (21st) and 35.0% of their 3-pointers (16th) while tallying 22.7 assists per 100 possessions (18th). They are without Enes Kanter who’s dealing with a knee injury.
The Spurs finally covered at home in a convincing victory over OKCSan Antonio snapped a two-game skid on the back of LaMarcus Aldridge’s strong performance against the Thunder. The seven-time All-Star dropped 39 points to lift his team past Oklahoma City. Aldridge was terrific from the field, making 19 of his 23 attempts. He also added six boards, four assists, and a couple of steals. The Spurs trailed by one at halftime, but they outscored the Thunder 36-27 in the third quarter. San Antonio had a great shooting night, hitting 54.3% of its field goals and 45.0% of its triples while missing only once from the charity stripe.
"LaMarcus was a beast, his rhythm was really good," San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich said. "He shot quickly, he made quick decisions and he also passed it out of there when he got doubled or there was a crowd. He did a great job of finding other people. He played a really smart game offensively."
The Spurs are scoring 109.0 points per 100 possessions (10th) on 46.7% shooting from the field (7th) and 32.7% from beyond the arc (25th). On the other side, they are allowing 106.7 points in a return (15th) on 46.5% shooting from the field (19th) and 35.8% from downtown (16th). The Spurs are 27th in the league in opponent turnover percentage (12.1%).
The top supporting trends for this game, found on Covers.com, are: Boston:
- 1-5 ATS in the last six meetings with San Antonio
- 1-4 ATS in the last five games against the Southwest Division
- 1-6-1 ATS in the last eight tilts following a straight-up win of more than 10 points
- 4-1 ATS in the last five home meetings with Boston
- 16-5 ATS in the last 21 games against a team with a winning road record
- 13-6 ATS in the last 19 contests against the Atlantic Division
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
The Spurs have dominated the Celtics in this decade, going 14-1 SU and 11-3-1 ATS over their last 15 encounters. Likewise, the Spurs are undefeated in seven straight home encounters with the Celtics, covering the spread five times in that span. The Celtics are playing in a good form at the moment, but their rivals over the last seven days were far away from the Spurs’ standard. Boston outlasted New York, Cleveland, and Charlotte, so the clash at AT&T Center will be a different story. The Spurs are healthy and play some fluid offense, so I’m backing them to win by two points, at least.
Prediction: San Antonio Spurs -1.5 (-110)
Full-Game Total Pick
After a tough loss at Philadelphia, the Celtics have played some solid defense. However, as I’ve already mentioned, their rivals were arguably poor offensive teams. Now, the Celtics meet the Spurs’ top-10 offense. San Antonio has been lethal at home thus far, averaging 114.8 points per game. The Spurs have struggled from deep, but they are a mid-range team that loves to share the ball and find the open man. Neither of these two teams plays at a low pace, so I expect to see a high-scoring affair. Also, the Spurs cannot rely on their defense too much, so give me the over on the totals. The previous four encounters between Boston and San Antonio in Texas went in the over.
Prediction: Over 215.5 points (-110)