The Eastern Conference leaders are back in action on Friday night, as the Boston Celtics play their second game on a back-to-back against the Philadelphia 76ers. The Celtics will be looking to continue their excellent form and remain top of the conference.
Celtics at 76ers Schedule
- When: Friday 22, January 2021, 7:30pm ET
- Where: Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia
- How To Watch: ESPN
Celtics vs 76ers Odds (Vegas)
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Celtics vs 76ers Preview
Celtics Looking To Rediscover Momentum
Boston’s recent five-game winning run was brought to an abrupt end at the hands of the New York Knicks. That run of form saw the Celtics emerge as the leading side in the Eastern Conference, as they managed to overcome the Toronto Raptors, Miami Heat and Washington Wizards. The Celtics scored over 100 points in each of their wins during that run, with their stand out victory coming against the Orlando Magic. Against Orlando, the Celtics won 124-97. It was a fine combination of excellent attacking play and stern defensive work by the Eastern Conference leaders.
Not for the first time this season, Jaylen Brown was the man to get the plaudits, as he scored 21 points and made eight assists. The 24-year-old has averaged 25.8 points per game so far this season, and 3.8 assists per game. Marcus Smart added 14 in that win, while Payton Pritchard and Semi Ojeleye scored 16 and 18 points respectively. We will find out more about the Celtics and their credentials this season during these back-to-back games against the Sixers this week, with the first game between the sides taking place on Wednesday night.
Sixers Have Excellent Chance In East
The Sixers are typically a side that are able to reach the playoffs, and while all the talk in the East has centred around the Nets and their acquisition of James Harden, the Sixers could be the side that goes under the radar. Their chances of winning this game against the Celtics will be improved due to the fact that it is taking place at the Wells Fargo Center, as they have won seven from eight with home court advantage. Away from Philadelphia, their form has been indifferent, as they have recorded just two wins from six.
The Sixers were also on a winning run before being beaten by the Memphis Grizzlies in their last game before this back-to-back against the Celtics. Before that defeat, Philadelphia had won successive games against the Miami Heat. Joel Embiid endured contrasting nights in those two games, as he scored 45 points in the first of the wins, before he scored just eight in the second game. Embiid is still enjoying a decent campaign in the NBA, as he has averaged 25 points per game this term, and is contributing an average of 2.9 assists per game. The key to winning this game for the Celtics will be keeping the 26-year-old quiet.
Celtics vs 76ers Pick & Prediction
The Celtics have been decent on the road this season, as they have won four from six. However, the Sixers have an impressive record with home court advantage. This will be too close to call, but the preference lies with the Sixers.