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Celtics vs Knicks Odds, Spread and Picks

Eric Rosales

by Eric Rosales in NBA Basketball

Jan 5, 2022 · 8:18 PM PST

Jaylen Brown coming out in starting lineup call
Dec 31, 2021; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Celtics guard Jaylen Brown (7) is introduced before their game against the Phoenix Suns during the first half at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports
  • The Boston Celtics play the second night of a back-to-back as they visit the Knicks
  • New York snapped a two-game slide with a win over the Pacers Tuesday
  • The odds and matchups can be found below with a prediction

Two teams right on the edge for the final play-in spot in the East tangle Thursday night, when the Boston Celtics visit the New York Knicks.

Both at 18-20, it’s definitely not where either team imagined they’d be this season.

These two Atlantic Division rivals are so evenly matched, oddsmakers have listed this as a pick’em. It’s the first of a home-and-home set, with the scene shifting to Beantown Saturday.

It all tips off at 7:30pm ET from Madison Square Garden, the opening of TNT’s double-dip.

Celtics vs Knicks Odds

Team Spread Moneyline Total
Boston Celtics PK (-110) -110 Ov 211 (-110)
New York Knicks PK (-110) -110 Un 211 (-110)

Odds as of Jan 5 at DraftKings

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Boston Outlook

The Celtics will be playing the second half of a back-to-back. On Wednesday night, they dropped a close 99-97 decision to the San Antonio Spurs.

That snapped a modest two-game winning streak, which included a win over the elite Phoenix Suns.

Jaylen Brown followed up his career-high 50-bomb against the Magic with 30 points and six rebounds, including a 4-for-8 mark from deep. He had a chance to force OT, but couldn’t covert a steal into points in the dying seconds. It’s the fifth straight game he’s led the team in scoring.

Jayson Tatum returned to the lineup after missing the previous four contests as he sat out with COVID. The all-star was just 6-for-20 from the field, finishing with 19 points and eight rebounds.

Boston could not find the range from downtown, going 9-for-28, a 32.1% clip. They were also outrebounded 48-41.

Even though San Antonio committed more than double the Boston turnovers (17-8), the Celtics could not take advantage, falling to 11-8 at home.

On the year, the C’s are middle of the pack in scoring, putting up 107.9 a night, but they’re in the bottom half in the league in both field goal (44.3%) and 3-point shooting (33.3%).

They have been able to generate more offense with second-chance points, ranking sixth in the NBA in offensive rebounding.

New York Outlook

If the Knicks are going to make a move into playoff contention, they’re going to need to play better at home. They’re just 8-11 at MSG, but eight of their next 10 are in New York, which included Tuesday night’s 104-94 win over the Indiana Pacers.

RJ Barrett had 32 points, eight rebounds and three assists on a crisp 12-for-20 from the field. Julius Randle was big in his return from a COVID stint, pouring in 30 of his own, while also grabbing 16 boards and four dimes. He matched Barrett, shooting12-for-20 as well.

They’ll likely need to be playing at a similar level for New York to be successful Thursday, as they’ll be shorthanded.

Derrick Rose is already on the shelf after ankle surgery, but Kemba Walker will join him as he has a wonky knee. Nerlens Noel (conditioning) is questionable as he returns from health and safety protocols.

After struggling to start the year defensively, the Knicks have steadily climbed back to sixth-best in scoring defense, surrendering 105.4 points a game

They also own the 3rd-best field goal shooting defense (43.8%). They have struggled defending the three-point line, however, as teams are shooting nearly 35% on the sixth-most threes attempted per game.

Celtics vs Knicks Pick

These teams have split the first two games of this four-game season set. New York won a shootout on opening night, going to double OT before securing a 138-134 win. Boston returned the favor with a 114-107 win at TD Garden.

Boston is just 7-12 on the road, but the are a surprising 5-2 on the second night of back-to-back contests, which is tied with the Chicago Bulls for the best record. They’re 18-18-2 ATS on the year, and 10-8-1 ATS on the road.

New York is 17-21 ATS, and a worse 7-12 ATS as the home team but they have won three of their last four at MSG.

Even though both teams play at a bottom-10 pace, they bring the offensive best out of each other. Look for the over for a third straight game.

The Pick: OVER 221 points (-110)

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