Celtics NBA Championship Odds: Can Boston Ride Its Streak Into Playoffs?
Scott Taetsch/Getty Images. Pictured: Jayson Tatum (left) and Jaylen Brown #7 of the Boston Celtics.
Boston Celtics NBA Championship Odds
Boston Celtics Analysis
The Celtics needed a win on the last day of the regular season to move up from the No. 3 seed to the No. 2 seed, and they unabashedly blew out the Grizzlies.
The Celtics have been on fire since the new year and finished the year with both the top Defensive Rating (106.9) and top half-court Defensive Rating (90.4), excluding garbage time per Cleaning The Glass.
Defensive Player of the Year frontrunner Marcus Smart has been at the heart of Boston’s elite defense along with the Killer J’s on the wing and Robert Williams roaming the weak side with his freakish length and athleticism. Williams will likely remain out for their first round series with the Brooklyn Nets, which will make guarding Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving an even bigger challenge.
While their defense gets most of the attention for the Celtics, their offense has quietly been elite recently too. The Celtics are first in half-court Offensive Rating (105.1) since Feb. 1, and this could be the reason why they survive Timelord’s potential absence in the first round of the playoffs against the Nets.