#1 Los Angeles Lakers
#4 Boston Celtics
Series Tied 2-2
The pivotal fifth game of NBA Finals betting action takes place on Sunday night at TD Banknorth Garden, as the Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics will battle it out to decide who will take a 3-2 series lead back to Tinseltown. Boston used a great effort from its bench and a well rounded scoring effort from the entire club to pick up a 96-89 win on Thursday night to knot this series for the second time.
The Lakers are going to have a really big problem in the paint if C Andrew Bynum either can’t play or isn’t effective. He only played 13 minutes in Game 4 and didn’t partake in any of the second half. Bynum once again had his knee drained in hopes to loosen him up for the fifth game of this series. F Lamar Odom has also had a terrible series, averaging just 7.5 points per game. G Kobe Bryant hasn’t had a great series either by his standards, but the difference is that he is scoring and having an impact on every game. In Game 4, Bryant shot 10/22 from the floor and scored 33 points, but he turned the ball over seven times in defeat.
Six different Celtics scored in double figures in Game 4, but the real boost came off of the bench, which spent a ton of time on the court, especially in the fourth quarter. G Nate Robinson had his best game in a green uniform, scoring 12 points in 17 minutes of action. F Glen Davis was the real hero though, as he scored 18 points off of the bench and provided a tremendous spark for a team that didn’t really have a dominant player in the starting five. F Paul Pierce led the team in scoring with 19 points on 7/12 shooting. G Ray Allen and G Rajon Rondo both had questionable outings, combining to shoot just 9/26 from the floor and scoring just 22 points. Without a great rebounding advantage (41-34 and 16-8 on the offensive glass), Boston wouldn’t have stood a chance and would be behind in this series three games to one.
This is a game that is one that the Celtics absolutely have to have. It doesn’t seem like Boston has the ability to score two wins in Tinseltown to win the NBA Finals. That being said, whether it is Rondo, Allen, Pierce, or F Kevin Garnett, someone is bound to step up and take control. If the bench can put forth anywhere near the effort that it did in Game 4, the Celtics are going to have control of this series going back to LA.
Selection: Boston Celtics -3 at Bookmaker Sportsbook
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