Celtics (10-4) vs. 76ers (5-9)
Game time: 7:30pm, TD Garden. TV – CSN, Radio – WEEI-AM (850)
Bos: Pierce – 19.6 76ers: Andre Iguodala – 18.2
Bos: Garnett – 7.6 76ers: Iguodala – 6.5
Bos: Rondo – 8.9 76ers: Iguodala – 5.7
Who'll go off: Paul Pierce. Why not go with the hot hand. He dominated the Knicks (33 points, 9 rebounds, 6 assists) and is shooting 47% from the field (42% from 3) in his last 5 games. Pierce remains the go-to-guy on this team, and I like him to keep the ship from sailing too far of course in this one. Keep your eye on the three point line in this one, Philly allows teams to shoot close to 40% from beyond the arc.
Who needs to be stopped: The stat leaders listed above point to Andre Iguodala, but I'm going to again go with the hot hand – Lou Williams. The 76ers point guard is averaging 23 points and 5 assists in his last 5 games.
The C's will lose if… they underestimate the 76ers. The Celtics pounded Philly in their first meeting of the season,
105-74. Alas, that was ages ago when Rasheed Wallace (20 pts, 6-8 3FG) and Eddie House (12 points, 4-5 3FG) were
playing well. Despite their poor play, there still is a chance this
Celtics team comes in over-confident and underwhelms us yet again.
Wildcard: The schedule and injuries. The Sixers are coming off a tough loss last night in Washington. Road back-to-backs are never easy. Philly's front court got thinner with the loss of Marreese Speights (MCL tear), and Elton Brand left last night's game with a hamstring injury. Don't laugh off Brand. He was averaging close to 20 points, 10 rebounds in the past week.
Prediction: Celtics 99 – 76ers 81
After the jump, a special message from Ali and Meghan, co-captains of the Celtics dance team.