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Boston Celtics vs. Indiana Pacers Betting Preview

After winning the All-Star MVP award, Jayson Tatum and the Boston Celtics (42-17) return to action to take on Tyrese Haliburton and the Indiana Pacers (26-34) as regular season action resumes Thursday night. The Pacers will host this one at Gainbridge Fieldhouse, with tipoff scheduled for 7:00 pm ET.

The Celtics are overwhelming favorites in this one despite playing on the road. They are -350 to win, while the Pacers’ moneyline sits at +280. The spread features Indiana as 8.5-point underdogs (-114), and the over/under for total points is 234.

Boston Wants To Create Separation In The East

Entering play Thursday, Boston holds just a half game lead over the Milwaukee Bucks in the Eastern Conference. Trying to create separation, every game is paramount as the regular season winds down. On the road this year, they are 18-10, and they are 25-12 against conference opponents.

Boston currently ranks fourth in the NBA in scoring, averaging 117.9 points per game (114.1 on the road). They are led by All-Star Jayson Tatum, who is averaging 30.6 points, 8.6 rebounds, and 4.5 assists per game.

They are also excited to get Jaylen Brown back, as he has been upgraded to probable from a facial fracture. In 48 games this season, he is averaging 26.5 points, 7 rebounds, and 3.2 assists.

Defensively, Boston is also solid. They rank seventh overall, allowing opponents just 111.7 points per game.

Pacers Hope To Turn Things Around

At 26-34, the Indiana Pacers sit 12th in the Eastern Conference, 16.5 games out of first place. They are really hoping to turn it around as they are just 2-8 in their last 10 games. Luckily for Pacers’ fans, they have played better at home (18-14) than on the road (8-20).

Indiana has struggled on the defensive end this season. They rank just 22nd overall, allowing opponents an average of 117.1 points per game.

On the offensive side, they rank 15th averaging 114.5 points per game (116.7 at home). Tyrese Haliburton leads the way for the Pacers’ offense. In 48 games, he is averaging 19.9 points, 3.8 rebounds, and 10.1 assists.

Other contributors for Indiana include Myles Turner (17.5 points, 8 rebounds, 2.3 blocks), Buddy Hield (17.5 points, 4.9 rebounds, 2.7 assists), and Benedict Mathurin (17.2 points, 4.1 rebounds).

Take Boston To Win And Cover

Boston has really played well as of late. They are 5-1 in their last six games, and they are 6-0 against the spread in that span. They are also 13-4 straight up in their last 17 games versus Indiana.

As for the Pacers, they are 3-16 overall in their last 19 games and just 5-12 against the spread in their last 17. In their last six games against Eastern Conference opponents, the Pacers are just 1-5.

This is a tough one to call. Especially playing on the road, 8.5 points is a lot to lay against any team. Still, these teams are just in completely different ballparks in terms of talent and ability.

Especially with the return of Jaylen Brown, expect the Celtics to make easy work out of the Pacers. Take Boston to win and to cover the 8.5-point spread (-106).

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