Celtics Get Odds Bump With Kings Missing Star DeMarcus Cousins

Matthew Jordan

Wednesday, February 8, 2017 3:31 PM UTC

Wednesday, Feb. 8, 2017 3:31 PM UTC

The Boston Celtics start a four-game trip through the Western Conference on Wednesday night in Sacramento, and the C’s catch a major break with Kings star DeMarcus Cousins to miss the game due to suspension. The oddsmakers have adjusted accordingly.

The Kings (20-32) lost for the fifth time in seven games on Monday, 112-107 at home to a Chicago Bulls team that was without All-Star Jimmy Butler. That game summarizes what makes backing the Kings so maddening. Sometimes they play like a potential playoff team, such as Saturday’s stunning home upset of Golden State. Then other times, the Kings play like the dysfunctional franchise they are.

Speaking of dysfunctional: Sacramento center DeMarcus Cousins is one of the 10 best players in the NBA, but he’s also a head case at times. Against the Bulls, Cousins got two technical fouls – the last with :01.1 remaining and the game already over. That’s just stupidity on his part. The two techs gave Cousins 16 on the season, which means he is suspended for Wednesday’s game against Boston. Once you hit the magic number of 16, every two additional technical fouls received during the regular season also results in a suspension.

The Celtics (33-18) certainly aren’t complaining that Cousins is out. Boston opened as an 8.5-point favorite on NBA odds when that number would have been cut about in half had Cousins been playing. He averages 27.9 points and 10.7 rebounds. When the Kings visited Boston on Dec. 2 and lost 97-92, Cousins had 28 points, nine rebounds, four blocks and three assists. The Kings’ offense has struggled mightily this season without Cousins on the court, as it drops off by almost 10 points per 100 possessions without him.

Boston enters on a seven-game winning streak behind superstar Isaiah Thomas. He was the final pick of the 2011 NBA Draft by the Kings – yet another mistake by that franchise in letting Thomas go. He was traded to Phoenix in July 2014. All the Kings got then was a $7 million trade exception and the rights to forward Alex Oriakhi, the 57th overall pick in 2013.

Sacramento has won the past four home meetings with Boston but didn’t welcome the C’s to California’s capital city last year as the teams played in Mexico City. The C’s are 2-5 ATS on NBA picks in their past seven at the Kings.

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