Phoenix Suns at Boston Celtics - 12/31/21 NBA Picks and Prediction

Phoenix Suns at Boston Celtics - 12/31/21 NBA Picks and Prediction Photo by Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

Boston Celtics (16-19) vs Phoenix Suns (27-7)

Game Info: Friday, December 31, 2021 at 1:00 pm (TD Garden)

Betting Odds: Boston Celtics +3.5 -- Over/Under: Click Here for the Latest Odds

The Phoenix Suns and the Boston Celtics duke it out at the TD Garden on Friday afternoon.

The Phoenix Suns have been in fine form as they’ve won eight of their past 11 games and they will be looking to stay hot after making light work of the Thunder in a 115-97 home win on Wednesday. Devin Booker led the team with 38 points, seven rebounds and five assists, JaVale McGee and Cameron Payne each scored 16 points while Cameron Johnson chipped in with 12 points. As a team, the Suns shot 46 percent from the field and 12 of 34 from the 3-point line as they poured in 33 points in the first quarter to take the early double-digit lead, before running away with it in the fourth quarter where they outscored the Thunder by 30-16 to make it a blowout.

Meanwhile, the Boston Celtics have been in terrible shape as they’ve lost eight of their past 11 games and they will be hoping to avoid a fourth straight defeat after getting stopped by the Clippers in a 91-82 home loss on Wednesday. Jaylen Brown led the team with 30 points and eight rebounds, Robert Williams added 16 points while Al Horford chipped in with nine points, 10 rebounds and eight assists. As a team, the Celtics shot just 34 percent from the field and a miserly four of 42 from the 3-point line as they managed just 40 points in the first half to fall behind early and things didn’t get much better in the second half. Payton Pritchard scored just four points on two of 10 shooting, Brown shot just 13 of 36 from the field and one of 13 from the 3-point line while Horford shot three of 14 from the field.

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Looking at the betting trends, the Suns are 5-1 ATS in their last six games against a team with a losing record and 11-5 ATS in their last 16 games following an ATS win. The Celtics are 4-0-1 ATS in their last five games against a team with a winning record and 4-9-1 ATS in their last 14 games against a team above .600.

Head to head, the under is 5-1 in the last six meetings overall, the Suns are 18-6 ATS in the last 24 meetings overall and the Suns are 8-2 ATS in the last 10 meetings in Boston.

The Suns are missing a few key players including Jae Crowder, DeAndre Ayton and JaVale McGee while the Celtics will again be without Jayson Tatum and Dennis Schroder. The Suns are clearly the team in better form coming into this matchup and they’ve already beaten the Celtics earlier in the season. This should be a close one, but in the end I have the Suns staying hot with another win and cover on the road.

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Peter’s Pick Phoenix -3.5

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The pick in this article is the opinion of the writer, not a PickDawgz site consensus.

Mitch's Take...

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