Boston Celtics at Utah Jazz Preview
The Boston Celtics and Utah Jazz meet for the first time this season in an intraconference matchup.
The Celtics are coming off of a 118-106 win over the Portland Trail Blazers on Tuesday night. The win improved the Celts to 40-17 overall. Boston has won 10 of their last 12 and sit third in the Eastern Conference.
Utah has struggled lately as the Jazz have lost three straight and eight of their last 12. The Jazz is currently fifth in the West but only 1.5 games separate fifth from seventh.
This is the first of two meetings between the teams.
Time: 10:30 PM ET
Arena: Vivint Smart Home Arena, Salt Lake City, UT
Celtics: Kemba Walker (O), Robert Williams III (O)
Boston Celtics Starting Lineup
Boston continued its win streak on Tuesday night as the Celtics beat the Trail Blazers 118-106. The win came as Boston was without starting point guard Kemba Walker who is out with a knee injury.
The Celtics were led by Jayson Tatum who finished with 36 points on 14-22 shooting including 8-12 from three. His 36 points come just after his 41-point performance vs Lakers on Sunday.
Tatum’s play has many people thinking that the young forward is taking the steps to become a star in the league and a future MVP candidate. On the season Tatum is averaging 23.1 points per game but in his last 10, he is averaging 30.3 on 50.0% shooting.
Boston is 17-12 on the road this season but they have won five of their last seven road contests.
The Celtics come into Wednesday’s game with the No. 5 offense and No. 3 defense.
Utah Jazz Starting Lineup
The Jazz have yet to win since the All-Star break as they are now 0-3. The latest loss was one worse yet as the Jazz were embarrassed by the Phoenix Suns.
Utah lost that game 131-111 as the Suns outscored them by 20 in the second half. The Jazz allowed the Suns to shoot 56.3% from the field including 60.0% from three.
Despite the loss, Donovan Mitchell had a big game as he went for 38 points on 11-19 shooting. Mitchell was the only Jazz player to score over 16 points.
To make things worse is that Jazz point guard Mike Conley was badly outplayed by Suns guard Ricky Rubio as Conley only had eight points and one assist while Rubio had 22 points and 11 assists. Conley was brought in to replace Rubio in the offseason.
Utah is 20-8 at home this season but they are only 1-3 so far on their six-game homestand.
The Jazz offense ranks No. 9 in the NBA while their defense ranks No. 13.
Key Player Matchups
Marcus Smart vs. Donovan Mitchell
Donovan Mitchell will have his work cut out for him Wednesday as he will be the focal point of the Celtics third-ranked defense. He will also have Marcus Smart on him who is one of the league’s best defenders at the point guard spot.
Mitchell has scored 69 points in his last two games while shooting over 50% from the field.
Gordon Hayward vs. Bojan Bogdanovic
Wednesday represents the third time that Hayward will have played his former team since he left in free agency. He is 0-2 so far vs the Jazz as a member of the Celtics.
Hayward is averaging more points on the road than at home this season.
If you are looking for someone to play then Jayson Tatum should be your pick. He has been on fire lately and is projected to score 40.5 points while costing $9.1k.
If looking for a cheaper option then consider Gordon Hayward who is available for $6.8k and is projected to finish with 32.8 points.
Bet on Matchup
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