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Jazz vs. Celtics Odds & Picks: Back Donovan Mitchell & Co. as Road Underdogs?

Jazz vs. Celtics Odds & Picks: Back Donovan Mitchell & Co. as Road Underdogs? article feature image

Alex Goodlett/Getty Images). Pictured: Donovan Mitchell (45) of the Utah Jazz, Jayson Tatum (0) and Daniel Theis (27) of the Boston Celtics.

  • The updated betting odds for Friday's matchup between the Utah Jazz and Boston Celtics make the C's 1.5-point favorites at home with the over/under set at 219.5.
  • The Celtics are nursing injuries to several players in their lineup, but are still favored against the streaky Jazz.
  • Should you bet the Jazz to pull the road upset? We preview the game with picks on the matchup below.

The Utah Jazz travel to Boston for a rematch with the Celtics from just nine days ago. But with the Celtics’ recent rash of injuries, is this truly a rematch?

Tonight, the Celtics will be without Gordon Hayward (knee) and Jaylen Brown (hamstring) but they will be gaining Kemba Walker who missed last week’s matchup with a knee injury. He played just 23 minutes in his first game back from injury, but per our FantasyLabs tools, he will see his minutes limit increased for tonight’s game.

Friday NBA Odds & Picks

Odds as of Friday and via BetMGM. Get up to a $500 risk-free bet at BetMGM today or see more offers and reviews for the best online sportsbooks.

Utah Jazz at Boston Celtics

  • Spread: Celtics -1.5
  • Over/Under: 221.5
  • Time: 8 p.m. ET

The return of Kemba Walker after resting on Wednesday should offset some of the loss of Gordon Hayward and Jaylen Brown, but it does little to explain the line. At the time of this writing, the moneyline sits at Celtics -120.

The C’s are generating 61% of moneyline bets but only 21% of the money, which is an indicator of sharp money on the Jazz. It has also moved in the Jazz’s favor after opening at Celtics -130, so sharp money appears to be reversing that line. Last week these teams met and the Jazz closed as 4-point favorites at home.

Should home court and Walker being back in the lineup make the Celtics the favorite despite the loss of Hayward and Brown? Absolutely.

The money is with the Jazz, there’s no doubt about that, but that does not make them a good pick. They’ve been profitable dogs in these spots (20-28 +$1288 since 2016), but are 10-12 straight up against teams with a win percentage over .600 this season –that number falls to 4-7 when the Jazz are on the road. On the other hand, the Celtics are 15-10 SU against teams with a .600 win percentage and are 8-3 at home.

From 2016 through 2019, the Jazz were a top ranked defensive team, but this is the first season since that time that they have ranked outside of the top 10. Over their past 10 games, the Jazz rank 26th in Defensive Rating.

On the other hand, the Celtics have been exceptional this season at scoring the basketball. They rank sixth in Offensive Rating on the season. This game should be very similar to last week’s where the Celtics shot 54% from the Field and 42% from deep. The Jazz have not shown that they can stop anyone from scoring over their past 10 games, and it certainly doesn’t look like it will start tonight.

The Celtics have some significant injuries to the starting lineup as noted above, but their depth enables them to excel despite those setbacks. They Celtics have one player who exceeds 10 minutes per game with a Negative Net Rating, Semi Ojeleye. That’s it. The injuries hurt in terms of name value, but they don’t effect the Celtics as a whole.

Boston is the better team, and they’ve showed it all season long. Expect this to be a repeat of last week as the Celtics grab this W at home by carving up an overrated Jazz defense.

THE PICK: Celtics ML -120
[Bet now at BetMGM. NJ only.]

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