Celtics vs Trail Blazers: Take Boston In The First Half

Action Network contributor Jessica Gonsalves details her betting picks and prediction for the nightcap of the NBA TV doubleheader between the Celtics and Trail Blazers on Monday.

Celtics vs. Trail Blazers Odds

Celtics Odds -12
Trail Blazers Odds +12
Moneyline -700 / +500
Over/Under 219
Time Monday, 10:30 p.m. ET
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.

Here’s everything you need to know about Celtics vs. Trail Blazers on Monday, March 11 — our expert prediction and betting picks for today.

Tonight’s NBA matchup presents an extreme contrast between the league-leading Boston Celtics and the struggling Portland Trail Blazers. The Celtics, with their top-tier performance metrics, have a near-double digit point spread against a Blazers team that has faced challenges throughout the season.

We will dive into the depths of both teams’ seasons, exploring key statistics and narrative elements that could influence the game’s outcome and, consequently, who covers the spread.

Let’s get to our Celtics vs. Trail Blazers prediction and pick.

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Celtics vs. Trail Blazers Prediction

Pick: Celtics 1H -5.5

Celtics Betting Outlook

Boston has dominated the NBA landscape this season, boasting the number one spot in Offensive Rating. The Celtics’ efficiency isn’t limited to scoring (third in eFG%) alone; they rank impressively low in turnovers (fourth) and hit the glass aggressively (fifth in OREB%).

Even with the Celtics’ middle-of-the-pack free throw rate, it does not diminish their scoring ability. This is thanks to their sixth-place ranking in free throw percentage, showcasing their ability to capitalize on scoring opportunities at the line when they do occur.

Defensively, the Celtics are nearly as formidable, securing the second spot in Defensive Rating. Their prowess in limiting opponents’ scoring opportunities is evident through their defensive eFG% (second).
Despite their surprisingly low rank in forcing turnovers, their defense remains tight, backed by a strong presence on the defensive glass and leading the league in limiting opponents’ free throw opportunities. This balanced dominance on both ends of the floor underscores the Celtics’ comprehensive approach to winning games.

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Trail Blazers Betting Outlook

The Blazers’ season tells a story of struggle, reflected in their 28th position in Offensive Rating. The root of their offensive woes can be traced to the league’s lowest effective field goal percentage and a tendency to turn the ball over. Without perennial All-Star Damian Lillard leading the way, Portland has faltered across the board offensively.

While their rebounding and free throw rate are closer to the league average, providing some silver lining, these aspects haven’t been enough to significantly uplift the Trail Blazers’ overall offensive output.

On the defensive end, the Blazers find themselves in the bottom half of the league, ranking 21st in Defensive Rating. While they perform well in generating turnovers (fourth), this strength is offset by their inefficiency in defending shots (23rd) and securing defensive rebounds (28th).

Such defensive lapses, coupled with a tendency to allow opponents frequent free throw opportunities, have compounded their challenges this season.

Celtics vs. Trail Blazers Picks, Odds

Considering the stark contrast in both teams’ performances and statistical rankings, taking the Celtics -5.5 in the first half emerges as the most compelling bet for this game.

Despite the game being in Portland, the Celtics’ overwhelming dominance on both ends of the court makes them a formidable force against the lowly Blazers. The Celtics’ efficient scoring machine, paired with their stringent defense, positions them well to cover the spread, even in an away game.

The Blazers’ struggle to find their rhythm offensively and their defensive shortcomings further tilt the scales in favor of the Celtics. While Portland may fight valiantly at home, the disparity in net rating and the comprehensive strength of the Celtics across multiple statistical categories provide a strong foundation for a reasoned betting recommendation in favor of Boston covering the spread.

The Celtics are also the best team in the NBA this season when covering the first half spread with a 44-18-1 record and 34.3% ROI, whereas the Blazers are the fourth worst with a 27-34-2 record and a -14.7% ROI.

Take Boston -5.5 in the first half and expect a double-digit lead at halftime by one of the best teams in the league this season.

Pick: Celtics 1H -5.5