March 10, 2013

Boston Celtics vs. Oklahoma City Thunder Pick

NBA Pick

Preview


Boston Celtics
vs.
Oklahoma City Thunder

Date/Time: Sunday, March 10, 1:30 pm EST

Television: ABC

Basketball Odds from WagerWeb

Point Spread: Thunder -10.5

Total: 200.5

 

NBA Betting Trends

Boston Celtics

  • Boston is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games when playing on the road against Oklahoma City
  • Boston is 8-15 SU in its last 23 games on the road
  • Boston is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games on the road
  • Boston is 2-4 ATS in its last 6 games when playing Oklahoma City
  • Boston is 2-4 SU in its last 6 games when playing Oklahoma City

Oklahoma City Thunder

  • Oklahoma City is 2-3-1 ATS in its last 6 games when playing at home against Boston
  • Oklahoma City is 1-4 SU in its last 5 games when playing at home against Boston
  • Oklahoma City is 4-2 SU in its last 6 games when playing Boston
  • Oklahoma City is 4-8 SU in its last 12 games when playing Boston
  • Oklahoma City is 23-2 SU in its last 25 games at home

 

The action gets underway early Sunday afternoon in Oklahoma City as the Thunder host the Boston Celtics. Boston is 34-27 on the year, and the Celtics are playing surprisingly well without Rajon Rondo. Oklahoma City is closing in on San Antonio for the top seed in the Western Conference. The Thunder are 27-4 at home this year. Let’s take a closer look at this one.

Game Overview:

Many assumed that when Rajon Rondo went down for the season the Celtics chances of being a real contender were done. Instead, the Celtics seem to have rededicated themselves to playing much better on the defensive end. When Boston was at their best a few years ago, the team was known for its defensive prowess. The past couple years they kind of got away from that, but Boston is playing very tough defense again of late. After starting the year shaky on this end, Boston is only allowing opponents to shoot 43.7 percent from the floor for the season.

Who has stepped up for the Celtics after Rondo went down with an injury? Jeff Green has really starting contributing in all facets of the game. Avery Bradley has become one of the best defensive perimeter players in the NBA. Chris Wilcox and Brandon Bass are giving the team good minutes inside. Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett have been shouldering the biggest part of the load on the offensive end. One weakness for Boston this year is rebounding. They are one of the worst rebounding teams in the league.

Oklahoma City has been dominant at home this season. The Thunder have been getting great play from Russell Westbrook of late. Westbrook even got a big nod of approval from Kobe Bryant after Westbrook dominated the Lakers earlier this week. Westbrook is averaging three more assists per game this year, and his three-point percentage is at a career high. Kevin Durant would be the runaway leader in the MVP race in almost any other year, but LeBron James’ special season has him sitting in second in most experts predictions. Durant is shooting 51 percent from the floor (41 percent from three-point range), and he is averaging a career high five assists per game. Kevin Martin has fit in nicely with the Thunder this year, and most people don’t realize what an offensive force Serge Ibaka has become.

Oklahoma City averages 107 points per game, which is first in the NBA. It’s so tough for opposing teams to slow this team down, because they have so many different weapons. If you try to slow one guy down, the Thunder have three others guys who can beat you. Maybe most impressive of all is Oklahoma City’s improvement on the defensive end. The Thunder are second in the NBA in field goal percentage defense. A couple years ago that was a major weakness for this team, but they are very well-rounded now.

Free Pick: Under 200.5

Boston doesn’t want to get into a track meet with the Thunder, and both of these teams are playing very good defense right now. I think Oklahoma City wins this one, but I like the under better than the side.

Thunder 104 Celtics 93

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Kyle Hunter

is full-timesports writer and sports handicapper. You simply won’t find someone who loves sports more than Kyle. Kyle considers college football and college basketball his two favorite sports. Kyle has earned many accolades for his highly successful handicapping, and he writes full-time for many top sports websites. Keep an eye out for high quality free sports analysis from Kyle!

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