Net Gains: Stick With Brooklyn Over Tired Celtics

Saturday, March 30, 2019 2:42 AM UTC

Saturday, Mar. 30, 2019 2:42 AM UTC

The Brooklyn Nets weren’t the right NBA pick on Thursday, but we’re going back to the well for Saturday’s game against the Boston Celtics.

<p style="text-align:right"><em>Jason’s 2018-19 NBA picks record through Mar. 28: 22-23-1 ATS, 0-4 ML (minus-9.35 units), 32-15 Totals</em></p><p style="text-align:center"><strong>Boston (45-31 SU, 36-39-1 ATS) at Brooklyn (38-38 SU, 41-35 ATS)</strong></p><p style="text-align:center"><strong>Saturday, 6:00 p.m. ET</strong></p><p style="text-align:center"><strong>Free NBA Pick: <a href="" target="_blank">Nets ATS</a></strong></p><p style="text-align:center"><b>Recommended Sportsbook: <a href=";book=5dimes" target="_blank">5Dimes</a></b></p><p>[/]{"component":"oddswidget", "eventId":3569118, "sportsbooksIds":[19,1096,1275,169,93], "LineTypeId":1, "PeriodTypeId":1}[/]</p><p>To paraphrase Phil Hellmuth, if it weren’t for luck, we’d get all of our <u><a href="">NBA picks</a></u> right. The Brooklyn Nets were obviously the correct choice for Thursday’s game against the Philadelphia 76ers, even if they did end up losing 123-110 as 7-point road dogs. It was just one of those games where the Sixers made their threes (12-of-25) and Brooklyn didn’t (11-of-32). Stupid variance.<br /><br />We’re not deterred here at the home office. Saturday’s game against the Boston Celtics looks like another good spot to follow the Nets, especially with Boston playing on zero days of rest. We don’t have any <u><a href="" target="_blank">NBA odds</a></u> yet at press time, so we’re taking a leap of faith here, but if you like what you see when the lines come out, don’t hesitate to fade the Celtics in this divisional matchup.</p><p> </p><h2><strong>You Can Call Me Day-To-Day</strong></h2><p>We might feel differently if Boston weren’t 4-5 SU and 2-7 ATS over their past nine games. On Friday, they beat the Indiana Pacers 114-112 as 7-point home faves, thanks to Kyrie Irving’s winning lay-up with less than a second remaining. At least bench strength isn’t a scarcity for the C’s; they went nine-deep in this matchup, with Irving (plus-6.6 BPM) and Al Horford (plus-4.7 BPM) topping out at 35 minutes.<br /><br />However, this means there’s a very good chance that Horford doesn’t play on Saturday. He’s been dealing with a sore knee, and <a href="" target="_blank">much to our chagrin</a>, Horford was held out of Sunday’s 115-96 loss to the San Antonio Spurs (–1.5 away). That was another occasion where the computer projections were way off; FiveThirtyEight had Boston at –7.5, but they opened at –2, before Horford was taken out of the mix.</p><p> </p><h2><strong>Ballin’</strong></h2><p>The Nets are still what they are: small-market, or as small as a team playing in New York City can be. They don’t have any superstars to speak of, and barely any stars – D’Angelo Russell (plus-2.9 BPM) is on the cusp. It’s not like basketball fans are refreshing their preferred rumor sites to find out the latest about Jarrett Allen (plus-2.5 BPM) or Joe Harris (plus-0.8 BPM). Plus, you get that added “plain name” value from Harris. If his name were Montel Vontavious Harris, people might think more highly of him.<br /><br />[/]{"component": "embedHTML", "code": "&lt;blockquote class=\"twitter-tweet\" data-lang=\"en\"&gt;&lt;p lang=\"en\" dir=\"ltr\"&gt;Joe Harris (26 PTS, 6 3PM) went off for the &lt;a href=\"\"&gt;@BrooklynNets&lt;/a&gt; in their win over the Lakers! 🔥&lt;a href=\";amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;#WeGoHard&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href=\"\"&gt;;/a&gt;&lt;/p&gt;— NBA TV (@NBATV) &lt;a href=\"\"&gt;March 23, 2019&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/blockquote&gt;\n\n&lt;script async src=\"\" charset=\"utf-8\"&gt;&lt;/script&gt;"}[/]<br /><br />Let’s also not overlook the playoff implications of Saturday’s matchup. The Nets are in seventh place in the Eastern Conference, just one game ahead of ninth-place Orlando with six games left on the schedule. The fourth-place Celtics have already clinched, and while they’re still fighting with Indiana (also 45-31 SU) for the last top-half seed in the East, this game clearly means more to Brooklyn. We expect the Nets to play like it, and chances are we’re going to get some value from them at the open – if the lines come out before Horford gets pulled. There’s always hope.</p>
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