The first post-All Star games of the 2021-22 NBA season tip off this Thursday, including a key Eastern Conference matchup between the Boston Celtics and Brooklyn Nets. Tip-off is at 7:30 PM ET on TNT. The Celtics are sixth in the East coming out of the break, while Brooklyn are in eighth place after losing 12 of their last 14 games.
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The Nets (31-28 SU, 23-34-2 ATS) were the title favorites for most of the season, but at press time, they find themselves in a third-place tie with the defending champion Milwaukee Bucks at +600. Despite having the better record and a much healthier lineup, the Celtics (34-26 SU, 30-29-1 ATS) are well behind Brooklyn and the other top contenders at +2800.
Brooklyn’s level of play has picked up since they sent James Harden to the Philadelphia 76ers at the trade deadline. Ben Simmons has yet to make his Nets debut – and might wait until they visit Philadelphia on March 10 – but Seth Curry and Andre Drummond have stabilized their injury-plagued roster somewhat. Kevin Durant (knee) isn’t expected back until mid-March, and Kyrie Irving still isn’t allowed to play in New York City, although that could change at any time.
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