BOSTON CELTICS (13-23)
at GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS (24-14)
Tip-off: Friday, 10:35 p.m. ET
Line: Golden State -10.5, Total: 202.5
After having their 10-game winning streak snapped on Wednesday night, the Warriors look to get back in the win column when they host the slumping Celtics on Friday night.
Boston may be 13-23, but surprisingly it are still in the hunt for a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, sitting just 1.5 games behind eighth place. The Celtics have not been helping themselves too much lately though, as they have lost nine of their past 10 games (2-8 ATS) including six in a row. This game marks their fourth game of a five-game road trip, where they have surrendered 119.7 PPG during the trip. On Wednesday, they fell 111-105 to the Clippers. The Warriors are going in the opposite direction from Boston and just lost their first game since Dec. 19 when they fell 102-98 in Brooklyn on Wednesday. The most amazing part about the streak was that seven of the 10 games they won were on the road, including the six in a row before the defat to the Nets in which they committed 18 turnovers. On the road this season, the Celtics are a putrid 5-13 SU, but an even 9-9 ATS, while the Warriors are a solid 11-4 SU, but subpar 6-8 ATS, when playing in Oakland. Boston has taken four of the last five matchups between these teams SU, but the games have frequently been close (2-3 ATS), and Golden State has gone 8-2 ATS over the past 10 matchups. With the Celtics benefit from the trend that NBA double-digit road underdogs coming off an SU loss are 74-35 ATS (68%) on Friday nights in the past five seasons, the Warriors are 41-26 ATS (61%) when the total is 200 to 209.5 over the pat two seasons. There are no new injuries for this game.
Can the slumping Celtics keep the final margin to within single-digits on Friday? For the answer, connect to The Platinum Sheet for all the Expert picks throughout the entire 2012-13 season. The five experts are sizzling on NBA Best Bets since the start of December, going 61% ATS (83-53-1) including 64% ATS (57-32-1) since Dec. 16. StatFox Zach has a huge 74% ATS mark (20-7-1) since Dec. 1 and is currently 60% ATS (31-21-1) on Best Bets for the season. StatFox Dave has an excellent 68% ATS (19-9) Best Bets record since Dec. 1 and is 56% ATS (29-23) on Best Bets for the season. StatFox Scott is 68% ATS (13-6) in Best Bets since Dec. 16, while StatFox Gary is 65% ATS (11-6) in this same timeframe. Since Dec. 12, StatFox Brian has a 58% ATS (11-8) Best Bets record.
The Celtics bring one of the worst offenses in the league to Oakland, as they have scored 95.0 PPG on the season (26th in NBA), but have put up 99.7 PPG so far on the Western Conference road trip. Their defense has done well overall, allowing 98.6 PPG (11th in league), but they have been getting torched over the past three contests (119.7 PPG on 49.8% FG). SG Jordan Crawford (13.9 PPG, 5.7 APG) is coming off a great performance Wednesday versus the Clippers in L.A. with 24 points, eight assists and two steals. He has little experience playing the Warriors (5 games, 2 starts) and has averaged only 9.2 PPG (30% FG, 5-of-23 threes) with 4.0 RPG and 3.8 APG. PF Jared Sullinger (12.8 PPG, 7.2 RPG) is having a solid sophomore season, but has scored only 6.3 PPG (32% FG) and grabbed 6.0 RPG in 15.1 MPG so far on this road trip. He faced Golden State once last season, scoring 12 points and adding eight rebounds. SF Jeff Green (15.9 PPG, 4.6 RPG) has been the teamís leading scorer this season and has quite a bit of experience playing against the Warriors (16 games, 12 starts). He has averaged more points against them than any other team (18.3 PPG) and has also added 7.0 RPG.
The Warriors have averaged 103.4 PPG this season (8th in NBA) on 46.5% FG (6th in league), and scored 105.0 PPG on 46.5% FG during their 10-game winning streak. They have scored a lot of their points by way of the three-ball, and are third in the NBA in both three-pointers made per game (9.4 per game) and accuracy (38.8% threes). Their defense has also been fairly solid, allowing 98.4 PPG (10th in NBA) on just 42.9% FG (4th in league), including 92.8 PPG (41.4% FG) over their 10-game win streak. PG Stephen Curry (23.1 PPG, 9.4 APG, 4.5 RPG, 1.9 SPG) scored 34 points with seven assists, five rebounds and three steals in the streak-busting loss in Brooklyn, but also turned the ball over seven times for the second straight game. In his past four games, Curry has a robust 6.3 turnovers per game while making just 6-of-33 threes (18%). He has played Boston six times in his career and really struggled, putting up his lowest scoring average (14.5 PPG) and assist rate (4.8 APG) of any NBA team. PF David Lee (19.1 PPG, 10.0 RPG) has amped up his game in five January contests (23.6 PPG on 68% FG, 11.6 RPG) and averaged 15.0 PPG (50.0% FG) and 12.0 RPG in two games against the Celtics last season. Overall against them, he has netted 15.4 PPG (53% FG) and 10.4 RPG in 22 career games (14 starts). SF Andre Iguodala (10.1 PPG, 4.9 APG, 4.3 RPG, 1.5 SPG) has only had double-digit points in one of his past nine games this season (7.9 PPG on 54% FG and 58% threes), but has averaged 14.2 PPG (45% FG), 5.2 APG and 4.8 RPG in 32 career games versus Boston. He did very poor against them last season though, shooting 2-for-13 and averaging 3.0 PPG and 5.5 APG in those two games. SG Klay Thompson (19.3 PPG, 41.4% threes) is one of the top long-range shooters in NBA, and is knocking down 44% of his threes in five January games.