The NBA’s second round is coming closer to a close as two games are up on the board throughout September 9. One of these games will be between the Toronto Raptors and the Boston Celtics. Toronto and Boston have met in a solid series so far, which could come to an end on Monday night. This game will tip off at around 6:30 PM Eastern time.
The Raptors had put up a record of 53-19 throughout the regular season, which had them in second place of the Eastern Conference. Toronto met up with the Brooklyn Nets in the first round of the playoffs. The Raptors moved on in a four game sweep. Now Toronto is looking to tie up this series with a big win on Wednesday night.
Boston finished out the regular season with a record of 48-24, which helped the secure the third seed in the Eastern conference. The Celtics booked a first round matchup with the Philadelphia 76ers, who they knocked out in four games. Boston now has a chance to secure a spot in the Eastern Conference Finals with a win in Game 6.
These two teams have gone back and forth in this series, but the Celtics are coming in off an impressive Game 5 win. Boston put up a strong performance to take the series lead back, which Toronto needs to find an answer to on Wednesday night. I expect both teams to try and get their offense going early to take a huge Game 6 win.
Game 1 of this series was on August 30. Kyle Lowry put up 17 points, which was not enough. Jayson Tatum and Marcus Smart both finished with 21 points for the Celtics. Kemba Walker put up 18 points and 10 assists as Boston took a 1-0 series lead with a 112-94 win.
The second game of this series was back on September 1. OG Anunoby dropped 20 points, while Fred VanVleet scored 19 points. Jayson Tatum finished with 34 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists. Marcus Smart earned 19 points as well as the Celtics took a 2-0 series lead with a 102-99 win.
Game 3 of this series on September 3. Kemba Walker dropped 29 points, while Jaylen Brown put up 19 points and 12 rebounds. It was not enough for the Celtics though. Kyle Lowry finished with 31 points and 8 assists. Fred VanVleet dropped 35 points, while OG Anunoby scored an insane buzzer beater to give the Raptors a 104-103 win.
Game 4 of the series was on September 5. Jayson Tatum finished with 24 points and 10 rebounds, while Kemba Walker scored 15 points. Boston came up short again as the Raptors came back to tie the series. Pascal Siakam earned 23 points and 11 rebounds, while Kyle Lowry had 22 points and 11 rebounds. Toronto won 100-93 to tie up the series.
The fifth and most recent game of this series was back on September 5. Fred VanVleet led the Raptors with 18 points, which was not nearly enough. Jaylen Brown 27 points, while Kemba Walker dropped 21 points and 7 assists. The Celtics took back the series lead with an impressive 111-89 win.
Field Goal Shooting
Toronto has not been quite as nice from the field throughout the playoffs. The Raptors have made around 44.5 percent of their shots from the field, which is second worst in the remaining teams. Toronto three point shooting has been a bit better than Boston though. The Raptors have made around 36.4 percent of their shots from deep.
The Celtics have been solid when it comes to shooting in this playoff run. Boston has made around 45.6 percent of their shots from the field in this postseason. The Celtics have not been doing great from deep, making 34.3 percent of their shots from behind the arc, which is worst from the remaining playoff teams.
These two teams have been much more defensive heavy throughout this playoff run. Boston has been one of the best defensive teams throughout the playoffs. The Raptors have been really strong as well, but need to find a way to shut down the Celtics. If Boston can get inside on Toronto again, they could finish off the Raptors.
Fred VanVleet has had a nice playoff run for the Raptors. VanVleet is averaging 19.5 points per game throughout the playoffs. Pascal Siakam has averaged 18 points and 7 rebounds per game. Kyle Lowry is averaging 16 points and 6 assists per game in the playoffs. Serge Ibaka and Norman Powell are averaging 15 points and 12.5 points per game respectively off the bench. OG Anunoby has averaged 11 points per game.
Jayson Tatum has been a nice leader for the Celtics in this postseason. Tatum has averaged 24.5 points and 9.5 rebounds per game. Kemba Walker is averaging 22 points per game and 5 assists, while Jaylen Brown has averaged 20 points. Marcus Smart has helped round out the lineup by averaging 11.5 points per game.
These two teams have seen strong playoff performances from their rosters. The Raptors kept Tatum kind of quiet in Game 5, but Boston was still able to earn a win. If Tatum goes off in Game 6, it will give the Celtics a great chance to take the series. Toronto will need to get VanVleet going if they want to win this series.
These two teams have met in an exciting series so far, but I believe that the Celtics will finish off the Raptors in Game 6. Boston’s defense has been elite throughout this series, which I think will help them eliminate Toronto. The Celtics have also gotten a nice spread from scoring in this series, which could be too much for the Raptors to handle in this one.
BetOnline has Boston listed as a -3 against the spread in Game 6. This gives a slight edge to the Celtics, which I agree with in this series. Boston has been the better overall team and I think they will prove to be too much for Toronto. The Celtics have a dangerous lineup and a great defense, which I think will book them a spot in the Eastern Conference Finals.