Home » Hawks vs Celtics Picks, Predictions & Odds Tonight – NBA

Hawks vs Celtics Picks, Predictions & Odds Tonight – NBA

The Boston Celtics do not fear the Atlanta Hawks. It has been two full calendar years since the Hawks beat the Celtics in the regular season, losing six straight by an average of 11.5 points.

Boston shouldn’t fear Atlanta, given the former is the best team in the NBA and the latter is six games below .500, in danger of falling out of the play-in tournament.

Tonight’s hefty 12.5-point spread in the Celtics’ favor makes plenty of sense, and that is before even getting into what chaos could unfold this afternoon with the NBA trade deadline only 24 hours away.

Do not make a bet tonight based on that chaos, though. Make a bet based on Boston’s overall dominance and Atlanta’s relative incompetence this season.

That may sound harsh, but doubting the Hawks has paid off and should again in our free NBA picks and predictions as we preview Hawks vs. Celtics on February 7, with tip set for 7:30 ET.

Hawks vs Celtics odds

Hawks vs Celtics predictions

The best current example of the differences between the overall basketball-watching public and the betting public is our discussions of bad teams in the NBA.

When the Pistons lost — how many was it again? Oh, right — 28 straight games across October, November, and December, the streak became mainstream news. Maybe your mother had not heard about it, but any casual sports fan had. When Detroit took the Boston Celtics to overtime on Dec. 28, fans at any NBA arena with a live game at that moment pulled up the extra five minutes on their phones.

No one talks about the Atlanta Hawks like that. Hardly anyone goes out of their way to watch this version of Atlanta at the expense of other games. Only the betting world recognizes how far the Hawks are from expectations.

Atlanta is not only flailing in comparison to the expectation of its preseason win total, though it is also certainly doing that. The Hawks are currently on pace to win 36 games, well below their preseason win total of 42.5 even before Dejounte Murray possibly leaves the roster. (Note: Murray is officially questionable tonight due to a back concern; Lakers trade rumors continue to float.)

But worse yet, Atlanta is 14-36 against the spread this season, believed to be the worst rate of all time. The world may think the Pistons are the worst team in history, on pace to win just 10 games, but at least Detroit is 24-25 ATS. The Pistons are competing to expectation. The Hawks are falling short on a near-nightly basis.

Sure, Atlanta has not been a double-digit underdog yet this season, but it is 1-4 ATS when an underdog of more than six points. The Celtics are only 9-7-1 ATS as double-digit favorites, but that is a winning rate, unlike anything that can be ascribed to the Hawks.

Let’s pause before finishing this thought process that is obviously trending toward taking Boston and this hefty spread. Aside from the size of the expected deficit, is there any reason to take Atlanta tonight?

In the last 15 games, the Hawks’ net rating ranks No. 22 in the NBA at -3.7. Notably and unsurprisingly, their defensive rating ranks No. 22. If there’s one succinct reason to give up on this roster construction, it’s in those numbers.

The Hawks’ offense isn’t even efficient, No. 18 in rating in that stretch and undone by an inability to produce from deep, ranking No. 20 in 3-point percentage at 35.9.

That will only worsen tonight, with the Celtics giving up the lowest 3-point percentage in the NBA in the last 15 games at 32.7. Both trends and on-court realities doubt Atlanta tonight, an all-time bad team in gambling terms.

My best bet: Celtics -12.5 (-105 at DraftKings)

Hawks vs Celtics same-game parlay

Celtics -12

Kristaps Porzingis Over 1.5 made threes

Jayson Tatum Over 3.5 made threes

This SGP had just been decided upon when the Hawks put Murray on the injury report. The possibility of losing the two-way backcourt mainstay would lessen Atlanta’s defense, and that logically lowered the payout on this play.

However, as long as these Kristaps Porzingis and Jayson Tatum made threes props don’t spike past 1.5 and 3.5, respectively, then this play should remain valid.

No one in the NBA takes threes at a higher rate than Boston, with 47% of its field-goal attempts coming from beyond the arc in the last 15 games. And the Celtics make them, putting those shots in the hoop 39.1% of the time, No. 5 in the league.

Atlanta’s perimeter defense is bad enough with Murray, giving up a 3-point mark of 39.6% in the last 15 games, the fourth-highest mark in the NBA. Without Murray, tonight could get out of hand. (Again, as of midday, Murray is only questionable. He could play tonight.)

In this stretch, Tatum is taking 7.5 threes per game, making 2.9. Asking for a touch more out of him than usual adds significant value to this SGP and is hardly a reach. Porzingis, meanwhile, makes 2.2 threes per game, so he’s effectively a trusted boost on this approach.

Learn how to bet a same-game parlay with these helpful tips and strategies.

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Hawks vs Celtics spread and Over/Under analysis

The Celtics opened as 11.5-point favorites on Tuesday evening before climbing to -12.5 on Wednesday morning. That fell back to -11.5 until the Murray update dropped, then returned to -12.5.

Assigning a point to Murray should be about right. He has missed only one game this season, so there is not enough precedent to thoroughly quantify the effect of his possible absence, but on a flawed roster, Murray’s abilities are amplified.

This total opened on Tuesday at 243.5 and jumped to 244 by Wednesday sunrise. It had reached 245 before the Murray news, subsequently dropping to 244 or 243.5, depending on your sportsbook.

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Hawks vs Celtics betting trend to know

The Hawks are 1-7 ATS on the road in their last eight games, falling short of those expectations by 11.5 points in the seven ATS losses. Find more NBA betting trends for Hawks vs. Celtics.

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Hawks vs Celtics game info

Location: TD Garden, Boston, MA
Date: Wednesday, February 7, 2024
Tip-off: 7:30 p.m. ET
TV: NBCS-Boston, Bally Sports Southeast

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