The Portland Trail Blazers season is fading away, and the current No. 13 seed in the West has the tall task of trying to beat the Boston Celtics on Friday. Portland is on a four-game slide, while Boston is gunning for its second straight victory. Friday’s NBA lines list the Celtics as five-point road favorites.
Celtics Fighting for No. 1 Seed
The No. 1 seeded Milwaukee Bucks became the first team in the NBA to claim a playoff spot in 2023, but the Celtics aren’t done fighting for that top spot. The Bucks technically could finish as low as 5th in the East, and Boston has the No. 1 seed in their sights as they head to Portland for a very winnable game.
Masked JB’s gone next level over his last two games 🔥 pic.twitter.com/XV8h4k0pV3
— Boston Celtics (@celtics) March 16, 2023
The NBA news regarding the Celtics’ injuries isn’t terribly good, with Jayson Tatum questionable while Robert Williams III remains out for at least another week. Tatum is the Celtics’ leading scorer and rebounder, while Williams is a force down low and on the glass.
The Celtics are also lucky that Jaylen Brown has been playing his ass off over the last two games, with the shooting guard combining for 78 points, 15 boards, and three assists.
Portland Staring Down Elimination
It may be early to stick a fork into Portland, but the fact is they are the lowest-ranked team in the West, not yet eliminated from the playoffs. If you’re a glass-half-full type, you can view the Trail Blazers as the No. 13 seed with only 2½ games to catch the Oklahoma City Thunder. But, as a realist, it’s impossible to ignore Portland’s four-game losing streak and 2-7 record in their previous nine contests.
The Blazers NBA odds are in freefall, and the team is watching their playoff hopes disappear right before their eyes.
In their last 10 games at home, Portland struggled to cover with a 3-7 record ATS at the Moda Center. As home underdogs, Portland covers 40% of the time with a 4-6 record.
Injuries could derail the Trail Blazers’ attempt to win on Friday, with Damien Lillard suffering from calf tightness and Jerami Grant being questionable against the Celtics.
Celtics vs Trail Blazers Game Injuries
Celtics vs Trail Blazers Head-to-Head
The Celtics beat the Trail Blazers 115-93 in their initial season matchup in Boston. The Celts covered the NBA point spread easily as 9½-point favorites. The Over/Under is 6-1 in their previous seven matchups as the NBA betting lines continue to underestimate the capabilities of these offenses.
Celtics vs Trail Blazers Game Information
- Game: Celtics (48-22) vs Trail Blazers (31-38)
- Location Moda Center, Portland, OR
- Day/Time: Friday, March 17, 9:00 p.m. ET
- Celtics vs Trail Blazers Live stream: NBA Game Pass
Celtics vs Trail Blazers Betting Lines
Celtics vs Trail Blazers Prediction
The Celtics are coming off a razor-thin win against the Minnesota Timberwolves on the road, failing to cover the spread as visiting chalk. However, they are a far better team, and the spread here feels slim, even if Tatum sits out. Portland looks like a team with minimal fight left, while the Celtics are just a couple of wins away from claiming the No. 1 seed in the East. My NBA picks for Friday will include the Celtics winning their second straight game and covering the modest spread.
The Boston Celtics are listed at -180 in our Vegas NBA lines. If you wager $100 on the Celtics, you can win $56. The Portland Trail Blazers are +155, offering a chance to win $155 on a $100 wager.
The implied probability attached to the betting lines gives the Celtics a 64.29% chance to win, with the Trail Blazers at 39.22%.
Celtics vs Trail Blazers Trends
Celtics vs Trail Blazers Edge
Celtics vs Trail Blazers Results
Celtics vs Trail Blazers Game Summary
Trail Blazers vs Celtics Previous Game (Mar 8, 2023)
The Boston Celtics are fading as the season wears on and look to snap a three-game losing streak on Wednesday against the Portland Trail Blazers. Boston is down its starting center and is losing ground to the red-hot Milwaukee Bucks by the day. The Celtics need to stop the bleeding now, and a home game against the No. 10 seed in the West might be the perfect spot to do it in. Meanwhile, the Trail Blazers are barely hanging on to the No. 10 seed and could fall as low as No. 12 with a loss. The NBA lines list the Blazers as 10-point underdogs.
The Celtics are the superior team with or without their big man down low. But, on a three-game slide and up against a desperate team, the NBA point spread of 10 feels too wide for this matchup. The Celtics haven’t covered a home game since Feb. 15, and our NBA picks on the game are banking on keeping that streak going at least one more night.
Trail Blazers vs Celtics Game Summary