Take Pacers Plus the Points vs. Celtics for NBA Picks

Joe Catalano

Friday, November 7, 2014 5:57 PM GMT

Friday, Nov. 7, 2014 5:57 PM GMT

The Boston Celtics (1-3) have the rare occasion where they're a betting favorite as they face the injury-plagued Indiana Pacers (1-4). Roy Hibbert is the only original starting member of the Pacers and he will have to show more consistency if the Pacers expect to beat Boston on the road. Find out who we like in this matchup of two struggling teams.

Tip-off is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. ET at TD Garden Arena in Boston, Massachusetts.

5Dimes Sportsbook placed Boston as a 4.5 point NBA odds favorite and the total for the game is listed at 194.

With 80 percent of their starting 5 injured, the Pacers aren't going to win many ball games. This is one of those games that if they play near perfect, they have a chance to win. On the other end of the spectrum; this is the type of game that the Boston Celtics must win.Jared Sullinger and Jeff Green have a distinct advantage offensively with Rajon Rondo dishing them the rock.

 

The Old Man
Point guard, Rajon Rondo,might only be 28 years of age, but he has a great deal of experience more than any other player has in this game when it comes to winning. After all, Rondo was doing the quarterbacking on the Celtics 2008 NBA Championship team, has played with many hall of famers, and has blossomed into a borderline hall of famer if he can stay healthy.

Rondo is known for his hustle and high basketball I.Q. Scoring isn't one of his strong suits, but he's definitely capable of putting the rock in the ocean. Rondo makes other players better and that's what you've been seeing with Jared Sullinger and Jeff Green.

On the season, Rajon Rondo averaging 9 points, 12.5 assists, and 9 rebounds per game. He might not have the offensive game of Oscar Robertson, but Rondo has a chance of being the first player to average a triple double since Robertson. Many great players such as Magic Johnson and Jason Kidd have played this game and have never been able to accomplish this amazing feat.

 

A Steal of a Deal
The Celtics look like thieves having received Jeff Green for Kendrick Perkins in a trade a few years back. With little star power on the Celtics squad and Rondo dishing him the basketball, this has opened the door for Green to have a breakout season and put up massive numbers. On the season, Green is averaging 22.3 points and 5.3 rebounds per game. Look for Boston to ride Green's back all season offensively. Green should eclipse the 20 point mark against a vulnerable Pacers squad.

 

Surprise,Surprise
Another major contributor to the Boston cause has been guard Avery Bradley. Bradley is currently 2nd on the Celtics in scoring at 14.8 points per game while shooting 40 % from 3-point range. You know when Bradley is your second highest scorer, your team isn't very good unfortunately. Regardless, Boston will gladly take his offense and Bradley will be a factor in this game.

 

Donald Sloan
From a Pacers perspective, Donald Sloan has filled in admirably for George Hill at the point guard position. Sloan is coming off of a 31 point, 7 assist, and 6 rebound performance in a 96-94 loss to Washington.Sloan is a multi-faceted player, averaging 15.6 points, 6.6 assists, and 5.2 rebounds per game. I say this to George Hill; good luck on getting your job back. Look for Sloan to be a key figure in tonight's winnable ball game for the Pacers.

 

Outcome
This is a very difficult game to handicap. Both teams are very unpredictable. If the Celtics play to their potential, they should cover the betting spread. I'm going to fade Boston and expect the unexpected for my NBA picks. That said, I also like the way that Chris Copeland and Donald Sloan have stepped up.

Free NBA Picks: Indiana +4.5 at 5Dimes

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