NBA Picks: Celtics vs. Knicks

Joe Freda

Sunday, March 31, 2013 3:34 PM UTC

Sunday, Mar. 31, 2013 3:34 PM UTC

The New York Knicks have reeled off 7-1 ATS in their last eight matchups, holding foes to 92 PPG in that stretch.Will the Knicks cash another ticket here or can the Celtics heat up just enough to collect?

Sunday night’s NBA betting has Mike Woodson’s club taking Madison Square Garden’s floor against the Boston Celtics, who are 1-5 ATS in their last six road contests.

Knicks, Smith hold off Bobcats

New York picked up its seventh straight win in Friday’s 111-102 triumph over the Charlotte Bobcats, while falling shy of cashing as 14-point home ‘chalk.’ The Knicks connected from the field at a 49.4 percent clip, leading by as many as 30 points.

Knicks guard J.R. Smith piled in a season-high 37 points, including an 11-for-12 night at the foul line. New York’s Carmelo Anthony came away with 32 points and 11 boards, logging his first double-double in seven games.

The battle’s combined 213 points topped the ‘total’ of 197 ½, lifting the OVER to 5-1 in the Knicks’ last six contests. Knicks center Kenyon Martin registered three of his side’s four blocks, while mate Iman Shumpert notched five assists and two steals.

Celtics, Pierce down Hawks

Boston also logged a victory as part of Friday’s league slate, hitting 54.2 percent of its field buckets in a 118-107 win over the Atlanta Hawks. The Celtics drilled 11-of-23 shots from three-point land, cashing as a 2 ½-point home favorite.

Celtics forward Paul Pierce notched a triple-double, recording 20 points and 10 assists en route to uniting with mate Shavlik Randolph for 23 rebounds. Boston’s Avery Bradley logged four of his squad’s eight steals, while Brandon Bass recorded three blocks.

The contest’s combined 225 points soared above the ‘total’ of 193 ½, moving the OVER to a 6-3 mark in the Celtics’ last nine duels. Boston hit 17-of-21 free throws, while being edged out in boards, 40-37.


What are the Pistons and Bulls up to?

Back the Celtics as road dogs opened New York as a six-point home favorite, while first setting the ‘total’ at 195. Early wagers on the Knicks and OVER drove the numbers north to 6 ½ and 196 ½, respectively.

I am adding Boston to Sunday’s card of sports picks, looking for Doc Rivers’ crew to stay within cashing range. The road team is 3-0 SU and 2-1 ATS in the trio of prior matchups between these foes, including a 102-96 victory by Boston as a 7 ½-point dog in January’s visit to MSG.

Tuesday’s latest battle between the rivals has the Celtics looking for revenge after New York’s 100-85 triumph at TD Garden. Boston suffered from 19 turnovers in the duel, while outgunning the Knicks in a 44.9 percent night of field shooting.

The Celtics have picked up momentum with two straight wins since Tuesday’s setback, heading to New York City with a 17-5-1 spread record in their last 23 spots that followed a victory. Boston’s stretch has included a 5-1 ATS mark in affairs coming after a win by 10 or more points.

New York’s latest run of cashed tickets has left the team overvalued here, while going 2-5-1 ATS in its last eight spots that came after a contest of allowing 100 points or more. Look for the Knicks to be handed another losing ticket here, facing a tougher affair than NBA oddsmakers expect.

NBA Pick: Boston Celtics + 6 ½ (

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