Boston Celtics vs. Utah Jazz
The new look Boston Celtics is 4-point road favorites against a revamped Utah Jazz team.Â The over/under for the game is set at 191.Â This will be an interesting game as both teams pulled off major trades right before the trade deadline last week.
Nenad Krstic and Jeff Green are both newly infused into the Boston lineup, and at least for now, things have not gone smoothly. Green only scored seven points in 18 minutes off of the bench against the Los Angeles Clippers on Saturday, while Krstic had nine points and six boards in 21 minutes in the starting lineup, replacing the departed Kendrick Perkins. Still, it is apparent that this is a team that is still going to be playing great defense each game.Â Boston holds its opponents to just 91.2 points per game this year. The trick is going to be figuring out where the inside offense will come from with Perkins gone, and both Shaquille O’Neal and Jermaine O’Neal sidelined with injuries. Glen Davis and Kevin Garnett can do the job, but they are both more or less power forwards and not centers, something that might really come back to hurt this team later on down the line in the season.
The Jazz did what they had to do by getting rid of Deron Williams, who help run legendary coach Jerry Sloan into retirement.Â The Jazz got Derrick Favors, who is a great young piece to the puzzle, and he has played well thus far since coming to Utah.Â Utah already has Andrei Kirilenko, Paul Millsap and Al Jefferson in the starting lineup, and we are probably just a matter of a couple of weeks away from Mehmet Okur coming back as well.Â All of which are very talented big men.Â The success of the Jazz will come down to its guard play. Devin Harris is a nice point guard to plug in as a starter, but he obviously isn’t Deron Williams. Harris had 17 points and 12 assists in the loss to Detroit on Saturday.
Boston hasn’t won a game here in Utah since December 2007, losing 90-85 two seasons ago as 1-point favorites and 110-97 as 1-point underdogs last year. Today however will be different, as the Celtics will win quite handily.Â I am laying the 4-points, and fully expect to the Celtics to win the game quite easily.Â They have more talent and better depth, which will put them over the top.
Boston Celtics -4 Utah Jazz