The Brooklyn Nets (45-41 SU, 33-50-3 ATS) host the Boston Celtics (54-31, 45-38-2 ATS) on Monday at Barclays Center in what could be the final game of their first-round series. Can Boston complete the sweep or will Brooklyn keep its playoff hopes alive? Find out in our Celtics vs Nets prediction.
Celtics vs Nets Odds & Analysis
The Nets opened as a 2.5-point home favorite with the total set at 220 points. The UNDER is 8-2 in Brooklyn’s last 10 games while the OVER is 11-4 in Boston’s last 15 outings. Boston won its sixth straight game against Brooklyn in the last matchup despite coming in as the underdog, suggesting that the visitors could be the smart pick for your Celtics vs Nets prediction.
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Tatum Drops 39 Points As Celtics Shut Down Nets Again
It was another defensive master class from the Celtics in Game 3 as they took a 3-0 stranglehold on the series with a 109-103 win over the Nets. Jayson Tatum was on fire with 39 points to lead all scorers while Jaylen Brown added 23 of his own.
Other than the offensive explosion from Tatum, the key to Boston’s Game 3 win was shutting down Brooklyn’s big duo of Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving – again. Durant and Irving scored just 16 points each on a combined 12-of-28 shooting from the field, while the Celtics forced 21 turnovers and had 13 steals in the game.
Durant, Irving Continue To Struggle Against Boston
Game 3 was another frustrating experience for the Nets, and particularly for their top two scorers. Bruce Brown Jr. was the only one who seemed to figure out the Celtics’ suffocating defense as he scored a playoff career-high 26 points to lead the team.
Brooklyn is averaging 108 points in the series, down from a season average of 112.8 that ranked ninth in the NBA. Another worrying trend for the Nets is that their scoring has decreased in every game, with Durant and Irving also combining for fewer points in each successive contest. The duo scored 62 points in Game 1 but that number was cut to nearly half (32) in Game 3.
Celtics vs Nets Pick & Insights
Celtics: Keys To Cover
Boston’s defense has ramped up through the series as the Celtics are seemingly getting stronger by the game. Tatum has been electric offensively as well with two performances of 30-plus points while averaging 29.7 points in the series. If the Celtics stick to the game plan, they should be on their way to the second round.
Nets: Keys To Cover
It’s the same old, same old for the Nets, who will need a lot more from Durant and Irving if they’re going to keep their playoff hopes alive. Brooklyn’s best performance in the series came in Game 1 when the two stars combined for 62 points and it took a buzzer-beater from Tatum to steal the win for Boston. Durant and Irving need to start making shots or it’s curtains for the Nets.
Odds Shark’s Computer Celtics vs Nets Prediction: Nets -1
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