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  • Event: (717) Boston Celtics at (718) Toronto Raptors
    Sport/League: NBA
    Date/Time: September 11, 2020 9PM EDT
    Play: 4% – Boston Celtics -2.5 (-110)
    Play Rating: 4%
    Result: Win

    4%  Take Boston (#717)

    Toronto can’t play any better than they did on Wednesday Night, willing their way to a double OT victory behind huge performances from just about every key guy in Nick Nurse’s rotation.  Six different Raptors hit at least a pair of three pointers in their first 40% shooting night from beyond the arc in the series – not something I expect to see again in Game 7.  Norm Powell and Serge Ibaka were both huge off the bench; Kyle Lowry and Fred Van Vleet both came up huge during crunch time.  OG Anunoby and Marc Gasol played well.  Pascal Siakam wasn’t hitting shots, but he was active throughout, contributing all night.  That’s the best Toronto can play….and it took double OT to beat Boston.

    The Celtics, on the other hand, did not play their best ball on Wednesday Night.  Kemba Walker, in particular, had a rough game.  Jaylen Brown had a hot start, then went cold.  Boston’s bench was quiet;; their defense a step slow.  Perhaps most importantly, the Celtics only took 18 free throw attempts in 58 minutes of basketball – the refs swallowed their whistles, and created this Game 7.  I’m not expecting the refs to swallow their whistles here; good news for the favorite.

    I stand by my assessment prior to the series that the Celtics are the better of these two teams.  Boston has been mispriced since the start of the playoffs: 7-3 ATS in ten postseason games, with an average ATS margin of victory of more than eight points per game.  They’re an undervalued commodity once again.  The Celtics are 17-9-1 ATS off a loss from Day 1 this season, 4-1 SU and ATS in this role since entering the bubble.  My money is on the better team in Game 7, plain and simple.  Take the Celtics

    4% at -3 or lower, 3% at -3.5 or higher.