West meets East in our first game on Tuesday, a high-profiler between the Denver Nuggets and the Boston Celtics on Tuesday.
Both teams are poised for a deep run in the playoffs and bragging rights will be on the line.
Denver Nuggets vs. Boston Celtics @ TD Garden
Past Meetings And Stats
The Nuggets took the first game against the Celtics in November (115-107) but they haven’t played since then.
It has been a good month for the Celtics, going 4-1 over their last five after looking like a team devoid of any confidence throughout January and February. It’s the same confidence shared by the Nuggets, which have also dropped only one game from their last five.
Three of those wins came at home and they are only 16-16 away from home. They haven’t beaten a playoff-bearing team away from home since winning against the Miami Heat in January.
Celtics have a 26-10 home record and they could be enough to see the star-studded team get the nod on Tuesday.
This is going to be a game where it could all depend on momentum swings. Boston play much better when they get off to a positive start, so look for the Celtics to start well.
Nuggets aren’t a team which goes away easily but they have had their struggles on the road and to win in the NBA, you need a good away record.
We’re going with the Celtics in this situation as they could beat better teams when they’re confident and running hot.
Golden State Warriors vs. San Antonio Spurs @ AT&T Center
Bookmakers have the line set at 2.5 and we’re predicting an action-packed game between two of the best Western Conference teams in the NBA.
Past Meetings And Stats
This is the third meeting between the Warriors and Spurs this season with both teams winning at home. The most recent win went to the Warriors, which scored an emphatic 141-102 win in Oakland.
Prior to that the Spurs won 104-92 at AT&T Center, a venue in which they have won 28 of their 35 games this season. With one of the best home records in the NBA, the Spurs have been rolling in San Antonio and that bodes well for this game.
Both teams have their injury concerns and they’re relatively major. Dejounte Murray will miss the game for the Spurs and Kevin Durant will be omitted for the Warriors, who could also be without Demarcus Cousins.
The Spurs are riding an eight-game winning streak with quality wins coming over Portland, Milwaukee and Denver. That’s going to hold them in good stead for this and the Warriors have looked a touch poor lately with losses coming to Boston and Phoenix.
Backing the Spurs without Murray isn’t an easy thing to do and this game could well depend on whether Cousins suits up for the Warriors. He was instrumental in their win over the Rockets last week and his presence will help the Warriors.
If he doesn’t play, it will be up to splash brothers Steph Curry and Klay Thompson to score the majority of the points, which could lead to problems if the three-point shots down fall.
Based on their great home record, we’re picking the slight upset and going with the Spurs.
Indiana Pacers vs. Portland Trail Blazers @ Moda Center
The injury of CJ McCollum could have a big impact on the Portland Trail Blazers as the playoffs approach.
Indiana will look to take advantage of the situation on Tuesday.
Portland won their only meeting against the Pacers, winning 103-93 in October. Much has changed since then, however, but both teams have exceeded expectations to this stage.
For the Pacers, being 44-26 without their star player Victor Oladipo is a credit to their depth and many expected them to slide down the rankings. They do have one of the toughest schedules to close the season, so bettors could see a slide in form.
Trail Blazers will have to play on without CJ McCollum after he suffered an injury last week. It will be up to Damian Lillard to pick up the slack.
Lillard is averaging over 26 points per game but that will need to be around 30+ if Portland are going to sustain their good form.
This is a good situation for the Pacers to improve on their 17-17 away record but it’s also a good chance for Portland to show they can win without one of their best players.
Lillard is going to see plenty of ball on Tuesday and when he’s on fire, he’s a tough man to stop.
Going with home side to show some grit and score the win.