I hope a lot of you made some good money off the Boston Celtics in the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs. They disposed of the Atlanta Hawks in six games to advance to the East semifinals for the sixth time in seven seasons.
But now, it’s time to turn their attention to the Philadelphia 76ers. This is obviously a big series for a number of reasons. We know that these two teams always play tough games against each other. An Eastern Conference Finals berth is obviously on the line.
For the Celtics, it’s a chance to keep home-court throughout the rest of the NBA playoffs. For the 76ers, it’s a chance to finally beat the Celtics in a playoff series for the first time in quite awhile.
So let’s deep dive into this series a little bit more.
Boston Celtics dealing with 76ers star Joel Embiid
The biggest test for the Celtics this series is going to be dealing with 76ers star Joel Embiid.
However, the Celtics will catch a bit of a break as Embiid has an LCL sprain. So the big man is certainly not at 100 percent and might miss a few games in the series.
But when he does indeed come back, how will the Celtics deal with the talented seven-foot Embiid?
This is a series in which we might see more of Grant Williams off the bench. Robert Williams can do a good job of taking a lot of the Embiid responsibilities But we also know how Williams can quickly get himself into foul trouble. So that’s why Williams can be so important in this series.
We know he can cover bigs. Just look at last year’s playoff run when he guarded guys like Giannis and Bam Adebayo! Point being, he can do it and he’ll be a big asset to keeping Embiid in check.
Boston Celtics putting the 76ers away when the opportunity arises
The Celtics need to learn that the playoffs get harder as the days pass on. So they need to put the 76ers away when they get the chance.
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We saw it at times in the Hawks series and throughout the regular season. The Celtics would get too complacent after a big lead or huge start and then try to coast for the rest of the game. You can’t do that this series!
When you have the chance to put this team away, do it and win the series sooner rather than later. Get rest for guys like Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum and others to be ready for a potential Eastern Conference Finals matchup with the Heat or Knicks.
This Celtics team should take care of business and get past the 76ers with relative ease.
The Celtics took care of this 76ers team three out of four times in the regular season. The one loss saw Embiid go crazy and the Celtics lose by two. That should tell you everything you need to know!
Unless Embiid has a Jimmy Butler vs. Bucks type of series against this Celtics team, I just don’t see how the Celtics depth can’t easily take care of this second round matchup. Play decent defense and this Philly team won’t match up.
Series Prediction: Celtics win in six games.