The Philadelphia 76ers and the Boston Celtics are two undefeated teams in NBA Summer League in Las Vegas. But that isn’t the biggest reason why we decided to cover their matchup. The rivalry between these two sides is enormous, and even in the preseason clashes, both teams want to win. Plus, the fans love to have some bragging rights regardless of the occasion. Both the 76ers and the Celts have high hopes for the upcoming year and want to filter players able to help them go all the way. That is why the Summer League carries so much importance for these two East powerhouses.
Philadelphia 76ers (+110) have two wins so far in Las Vegas. Their first victims were the Dallas Mavericks, whom they easily defeated, 95-73. The second one was vs. Atlanta Hawks, 96-88 OT, and the star player in both games was Tyrese Maxey.
The 21-year old point guard, a Kentucky Wildcats product, was unstoppable, showing his vast potential. Against the Mavs, he had 21 points, but then blasted the Hawks’ defense with 31 buckets. And may we add that he shot 1-for-8 from three-point territory.
Maxey had six boards and five assists while shooting 10-for-13 for two, constantly attacking the front line of the Hawks’ defense, penetrating towards the rim, and using his athleticism on both ends of the court. Isaiah Joe with 21 and Paul Reed with 20 and 12 boards assisted Maxey well.
Boston Celtics (3-0) posted wins over the Atlanta Hawks, 85-83, the Denver Nuggets 107-82, and finally against the Orlando Magic, 108-71. When looking at the entire competition, the franchise from TD Garden left the best impression of all the teams located in Nevada.
Overall, the Cs have a very strong team filled with players who had certain roles during regular season matches. Aaron Nesmith and Payton Pritchard lead the way in Las Vegas, harassing the rivals’ defenses in different ways. It is quite possible that one of these two guys becomes a candidate for the NBA Sixth Man of the Year award.
Nesmith had 51 points combined in the last two matches, while Pritchard had 61 over the previous three. When we add that Boston has Carsen Edwards at disposals, who occasionally shines, it is pretty clear why this team didn’t lose so far.
The Cs are mild favorites here, but we expect them to win. In our opinion, they are playing much better defense than the 76ers, who have an equally dangerous and efficient attack, but simply aren’t that physical and dominant when it comes to making stops. Also, we’ll see how Maxey handles Pritchard and will he have enough energy to endure the obligations on both ends of the floor.
The Over/Under limit is at 173.5 points, which is, in our opinion, good for betting on Over. That Boston’s defense didn’t allow anyone to score more than 82 points, but here, the bookmakers have underestimated Philly’s attack. Yes, the Cs defense is very good, and it will provide a difference, but they won’t limit the rivals to some 80 points or so, like in the past few games.
Pick: Boston wins
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.