Categories: NBA

Celtics vs Wizards – NBA Pick for February 8th

All odds that are referenced in this article were taken from Bovada at 9:00 am CT on 2/8/2018. These odds may have changed since the time of this writing.

The Detroit Pistons and Brooklyn Nets combined to hit the Over in Wednesday night’s game, which helped get me yet another win. The victory was good for my third in a row, lifting my season NBA picks record to 48-35-2.

This is a welcome sight after a nasty losing streak and I’ll hope to keep the good times coming on Thursday night. The NBA does slow down a bit with a six-game slate, but there should still be plenty of NBA betting opportunities to take advantage of.

While there are options here, the waters could be murky at first glance, as two of tonight’s games carry massive spreads at -13.5 or worse. The other games are in play, though, and of that group, a showdown in D.C. between the Washington Wizards and Boston Celtics has my attention the most.

Kyrie Irving is back in Boston’s lineup and the Celtics will quickly look to get the taste of a bad blowout loss to the Toronto Raptors out of their mouths. Boston is better than that and should be mostly healthy heading into tonight’s road tilt, with only defensive ace Marcus Smart not expected to suit up.

Washington won’t be 100%, either, as stud point guard John Wall remains out as he nurses a knee injury. With neither team having all of their bodies, the injury factor could be a tentative wash, while the superior team (Boston) potentially offers killer value as mild road underdogs (+110 at My Bookie).

Should bettors trust the John Wall-less Wiz or ride with Kyrie Irving and the Celtics? Let’s break this matchup down a bit further to find out:

Boston Celtics (+1.5)
Washington Wizards (-1.5)
Total: 206

I won’t waste time mincing words here. Washington can be tough at home (17-9) and are in a solid groove (6-4 over their last 10 games), but Boston is the superior team and offers enticing value.

The Total is dicey based on Boston’s impact defensively (still the #1 most effective defense in the NBA) while picking the Celtics against the spread is a waste of time. This game is a virtual pick’em, so if you like the Celtics like I do, you’re just taking them to win.

Bovada is the baseline site to start with for this game, but they’re not the one offering the best price on the Celtics as a straight up bet. Don’t get me wrong, an EVEN bet for a quality road team like Boston is still solid, but is probably the best site to take them at on Thursday night.

You can also look at the Wiz here. They’re very good at home and Bradley Beal has helped fans forget that John Wall is sidelined for the moment. Washington did win the only game between these two teams earlier this year, as well.

Of course, that was back when Wall was healthy and Marcin Gortat was playing passable basketball. Neither is the case this time around, so I like Boston quite a bit on paper.

The ATS data supports Boston here, too.

The Celtics have been elite against the spread all year (33-20-2) and that hasn’t stopped when Vegas doubts them. It’s rare that the top NBA sportsbooks bet against the Celtics, but when they do, Boston has responded with a staggering 7-2 mark against the spread.

The Wizards, on the other hand, have posted a below average 25-29 mark against the spread this year. They also have handled being a home favorite rather horribly, as they’ve produced a disturbing 6-16 record in that role.

Without John Wall to bail them out, I think the Wiz struggle to contain a now healthy Irving, while their admittedly explosive offense could be held in check by Boston’s strong defense.

It’s not crazy to think fans get a shootout here, but Boston defends well and they know how to grind out games. They also got embarrassed in their last game and have the Raptors (one game back) nipping at their heels for first place in the Atlantic Division.

Boston takes the cake for me here, whether you’re looking at motivation, talent and/or the actual matchup at hand. Ultimately, they also just offer the most betting value. Getting the Celtics as underdogs is pretty rare this year, while they’ve also been shockingly good (18-8) away from TD Garden.

The Celtics have hit some mild snags lately, but I love the value bettors get with them in this spot. I don’t mind throwing down money at Bovada, but I’d hunt for a little extra cash. For now, My Bookie offers the most value on this slate.

Kevin Roberts

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Kevin Roberts

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