Editorial by Graydon Fox
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On Tuesday, April 10th, the (54-25) Boston Celtics will be on the road to take on the (42-38) Washington Wizards.
“The Crowd” is projecting a final score of Celtics 105.1 – Wizards 102.4 with an over/under of 207.5.
Statistics (2017-18 season):
Point differential: Celtics +3.7 (6th) > Wizards +0.5 (16th)
Points per game: Wizards 106.7 (13th) > Celtics 103.9 (20th)
Points allowed per game: Celtics 100.2 (3rd) > Wizards 106.2 (14th)
Field Goal Percentage Offense: Wizards 46.8% (11th) > Celtics 45.0% (21st)
Three Point Percentage: Celtics 37.8% (2nd) > Wizards 37.4% (4th)
Field Goal Percentage Defense: Celtics 43.9% (2nd) > Wizards 46.3% (17th)
Turnovers committed per game: Celtics 13.3 (12th) > Wizards 14.0 (18th)
Turnovers forced per game: Wizards 14.4 (7th) > Celtics 13.4 (21st)
Rebounds per game: Celtics 44.3 (9th) > Wizards 42.9 (21st)
Assists per game: Wizards 25.2 (4th) > Celtics 22.3 (20th)
Boston received terrible news this week when it was announced that Kyrie Irving (24.4 PPG and 5.1 APG) would miss the rest of the season due to knee surgery. The Celtics have played relatively well in Irving’s absence going (13-6). Boston has eight players that average in double figures but obviously miss Irving’s scoring and distributing ability. Terry Rozier (11.3 PPG and 2.8 APG) has done an admirable job filling in for Kyrie and has proven that he’s more than capable of being a starting point guard in the NBA. The Celtics have already been without all-star forward Gordon Hayward the whole season but have somehow managed to secure a second-place finish in the Eastern Conference. Brad Stevens deserves strong Coach of the Year consideration for the job he’s done despite all the injuries and youth on the roster. The Celtics still have two of the best young wing players in the NBA in Jayson Tatum (13.9 PPG) and Jaylen Brown (14.4 PPG). AL Horford (12.9 PPG and 7.3 RPG) is one of the best passing big men in the league (4.7 APG) and is underrated for his remarkable consistency. The Celtics average 103.9 points per game (20th) and allow 100.2 (3rd).
The Wizards are in a complete free fall going just (2-8) in their last ten games averaging only 101.2 PPG in that stretch. All-Star point guard John Wall (19.2 PPG and 9.5 APG) recently returned from injury but hasn’t been able to lift the team from their current woes. Bradley Beal (22.8 PPG and 4.6 APG) has emerged as arguably the best two guard in the Eastern Conference. Both Otto Porter Jr. (14.8 PPG) and Kelly Oubre Jr. (11.8 PPG) are quality wing players that can defend and shoot the three. The Wizards are very perimeter oriented and their frontcourt doesn’t offer much scoring ability. Washington is one of the best passing teams in the league ranking 4th in assists (25.2 APG). The Wizards don’t have much size and thus are one of the weaker rebounding teams in the NBA. The Wizards average 106.7 points per game (13th) and allow 106.2 (14th).
Washington is (22-18) at home this season while Boston is (28-12) on the road. The Wizards are (2-1) against the Celtics this season with two of those games going to overtime. The Wizards are not playing well and will be going up against arguably the best defensive team in the NBA. The Celtics have proven they can win without Kyrie Irving and I expect them to do that once again on Tuesday.
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