The Boston Celtics receive the Los Angeles Clippers tonight at TD Garden.
Coming off a loss against the Houston Rockets, the Celtics will now face another Western Conference powerhouse, the Los Angeles Clippers. They’re currently 8-2 in their last 10 games, while their home record stands at 22-5. The support of their fans is essential at home, as TD Garden is always a very difficult place to play for any team in the league. This is both teams last fixture before the All-Star break, so expect them to come out guns blazing, in order to don’t go into the weekend riding a losing streak. Jaylen Brown is expected to play tonight, after he suffered a minor injury on on his calf in the Celtics’ last game, an absence that if it were to happen, could be decisive for the outcome of the game. Him, Tatum and Smart will need to be at their best defensively to contain Kawhi Leonard and Paul George.
On the other hand, the Clippers also come from a close loss at Wells Fargo Center against the Sixers, one of Boston’s main rivals. Patrick Beverley still won’t suit up for their matchup with Boston, as Lou Williams will probably get the nod in the starting lineup. Doc Rivers’ team is much better at home than on the road, although they haven’t had enough games with Leonard and George at the same time on their lineup, as they’ll have a very tough task ahead of them tonight. Marcus Morris, a recently added player by the Clippers, had a decent game against Philadelphia with 13 points, but he’ll need to do better tonight, as both their main stars will be heavily watched by Jaylen Brown, Tatum and Marcus Smart. He could gain some advantage of the Celtics’ undersized frontcourt, and give his team a much needed boost scoring-wise.
Boston’s home form has been very good this season, and I expect that to continue tonight. The Clippers are one of the best NBA teams at the moment, but they’ll face several challenges against the Celtics.
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