The Indiana Pacers (27-20) battle the Boston Celtics (36-11) this Tuesday (1/30/24) for the fifth time this season. Get Pacers vs. Celtics moneyline and spread odds, as well as predictions, starting lineups, injuries, and key matchups below.
Indiana Pacers vs. Boston Celtics Prediction
For this prop to hit, there must be two made threes by the time the game clock strikes 8:59 in the first quarter.
Although Boston boasts a formidable defense, opponents have the potential to produce from beyond the arc. On a per-game basis, the Celtics give up the third most three-point attempts, the third most wide open three-point attempts, and the sixth fewest restricted area attempts (via NBA.com). Can Indiana capitalize?
Tyrese Haliburton, Buddy Hield, and Aaron Nesmith currently combine for a 41 three-point percentage on 20 attempts per game. All three have flamethrower potential and should stress Boston’s defense. Myles Turner isn’t a knockdown shooter, but he operates as a stretch five with shooting potential. Finally, Pascal Siakam at least has the ability to hit threes even if he’s not particularly efficient. Essentially, Indiana fields five players that can shoot, so they might hit the prop by themselves without help from Boston’s offense.
Meanwhile, the Pacers allow the most field goal attempts within eight feet of the basket and the fewest three-point attempts. Boston will not get a ton of volume from deep; however, they can make their opportunities count. The Celtics lead the league in three-point attempt rate and rank seventh in three-point percentage. Holiday, White, Brown, Tatum, and Porzingis are all quality outside shooters at a minimum, so they have the chops to connect.
Overall, it’s a matchup between two teams that take a lot of threes and shoot efficiently.
Indiana Pacers vs. Boston Celtics Prediction: 2 or More 3PM in the First 3 Minutes
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Indiana Pacers vs. Boston Celtics Best Odds
The Celtics are nearly eight point favorites in this matchup, although the line is more malleable than usual given the uncertainty surrounding injuries tonight. Indiana is 11-9-1 against the spread on the road, while Boston owns a 13-10 record against the spread at home.
For Indiana’s +260 moneyline to hold a positive expected value, they need to win this game at least 27 percent of the time.
Indiana Pacers Starting Lineup
Boston Celtics Starting Lineup
Indiana Pacers vs. Boston Celtics Injuries
Tyrese Haliburton is expected to make his return from a five game absence, although it’s likely that his minutes will be limited tonight. Myles Turner, Bennedict Mathurin, and Jalen Smith are all questionable, but TJ McConnell is out.
For Boston, Al Horford will sit with a neck injury, and Luke Kornet holds a doubtful tag. To make matters worse, Kristaps Porzingis remains questionable. Boston’s center rotation is an absolute mess.
Indiana Pacers vs. Boston Celtics Key Matchups
Pace of Play
Because these teams only have three minutes to knock down two shots from deep, the more possessions the better. Indiana leads the NBA in pace and forces their opponent to speed up. Boston only ranks 18th in pace though, so they could attempt to slow it down and take Indiana out of their comfort zone. If the Pacers can exert their will in this department, then the prop has a better chance of hitting.
Tyrese Haliburton Shooting Rust
Boston allows the most above the break three-point attempts per game, and Haliburton takes the seventh most of these shots per game. It’s a prime spot for Haliburton to thrive from deep, but he has missed ten of his past eleven games. Should he come back firing on all cylinders, it would be a huge win.