Game 7 is here, and we have one of the greatest rivalries in NBA history, with the 76ers facing the Celtics. Each team has come up short when they get a chance to take over and win the series. Now it comes down to one game. Will James Harden show up? The answer in a game like this is usually a resounding no!
Bettors on the Boston Celtics should feel optimistic heading into Game 7. Jayson Tatum struggled mightily for three quarters in Game 6, yet Boston managed to keep them competitive enough for him to break free in the fourth quarter and score 16 points on 50 per cent shooting.
The Celtics still have plenty of reasons for concern going into this one, though. James Harden has been a ticking time bomb this series; you never know when he might explode for 45 or 42 points to lead wins in Games 1 and 4 before dropping 17 or fewer scoring performances in subsequent contests; his next big explosion could come soon!
Concerns surfaced Thursday when Tatum went an entire half without scoring, leaving Marcus Smart and Malcolm Brogdon to pick up the slack with 38 combined points on 54% shooting for Game 6. However, such individual performances cannot always be expected from players outside of the Brown and Tatum duo.
There’s no denying the Boston Celtics are one of the most talented and dangerous teams in basketball, ranking within the Top 3 for both offensive and defensive ratings. Unfortunately, everything about their 2022-23squad seems off-kilter; and it has proven difficult to pinpoint exactly where the issue lies.
Philadelphia can take several positives into Game 7 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series against Boston:
They have gone 4-1 away from home in this year’s playoffs, including two victories at Boston (where Sunday’s winner-take-all battle will occur).
They hold the NBA’s best road record throughout this entire season.
Since March’s end, they have only dropped consecutive games once.
On the downside: The 76ers missed an opportunity to defeat Boston on Thursday at home, forcing Sunday’s Game 7. Since 1975 they have lost all but one playoff series to Boston; overall they are 1-9 all time when playing road in Game 7s.
However, Philadelphia last triumphed at Boston Garden during a Game 7 road victory in 1982 – their sole postseason triumph since 1975 over the Celtics.
Can the Sixers match the magic of 1982 on Sunday? Probably not, but can they at least present a competitive effort? Definitely.
Boston head coach Joe Mazzulla modified his strategy for Game 6, opting to start Robert Williams over Derrick White. Williams played 28 minutes and finished +18 – compelling Joel Embiid to either accept contact from Al Horford in the paint or pass off to someone else.
The Philadelphia 76ers made adjustments and overcame a 16-point deficit, only to collapse late and fail to clinch their playoff series – something Doc Rivers is no stranger to having experienced 32 times prior; that makes him the all-time leader when it comes to missed playoff series clinch opportunities.
I think TD Garden will come alive again as fans give Boston their support in making an impressionable statement against Philadelphia. They held them to an impressive 36.1% shooting mark last game; therefore, their defense must again play an instrumental role in claiming another victory for their side. With that said the +7 is to many points to give the Sixers, I think Boston wins, but the best bet is to take the Sixers and the points.
If you enjoy hearing from the legends of pro sports, then be sure to tune into “The Grueling Truth” sports shows, “Where the legends speak”
Contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org
Players must be 21 years of age or older or reach the minimum age for gambling in their respective state and located in jurisdictions where online gambling is legal. Please play responsibly. Bet with your head, not over it. If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, and wants help, call or visit: (a) the Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey at 1-800-Gambler or www.800gambler.org; or (b) Gamblers Anonymous at 855-2-CALL-GA or www.gamblersanonymous.org.
This site is using Cloudflare and adheres to the Google Safe Browsing Program. We adapted Google's Privacy Guidelines to keep your data safe at all times.