76ers Betting Preview: Series Lead Up For Grabs

With a much needed win in Game 4, the Philadelphia 76ers stay alive in their round two series matchup with the Boston Celtics. In the NBA Playoffs, the team with the 3-2 advantage goes on to win the series 84% of the time. Let Game-Time Sharks Philadelphia break down the latest odds, lines, and predictions ahead of this crucial Game 5 matchup.

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Game 4 Recap

In a must-win game 4, the Philadelphia 76ers came out of the gates strong, taking a 27-19 first-quarter lead and a nine-point lead heading into halftime.

Since the Sixers don’t make anything easy, the Celtics deleted a double-digit lead and took the lead in the game’s final minutes. In the Sixers’ final possession, James Harden knocked down a clutch floater to tie the game at 107 and send the game to overtime.

In overtime, the Sixers were down two points once again going into their final possession. Once again, James Harden came to the rescue. Joel Embiid found Harden open in the corner for a go-ahead three with 19 seconds left in the game.

Celtic’s guard Marcus Smart appeared to hit a game-winner of his own, but the review showed he didn’t get the shot up in time, and the Sixers snuck out of this one with a 116-115 win.

Time and Place

After splitting two games in Philadelphia, the series heads back to TD Garden for a highly anticipated Game 5.

Location: TD Garden – Boston, Massachusetts
Time: Tuesday, May 9th – 7:30 PM (ET)

Odds, Lines, and Predictions

All odds courtesy of BetMGM: It’s Time To Change The Game

Philadelphia 76ers: +7.5 spread (-110), +240 ML
Boston Celtics: -7.5 spread (-110), -300 ML
Total Points: Over 213.5 (-110), Under 213.5 (-110)

There is a common theme throughout the first four games of this series. The performance of James Harden dictates whether or not the Sixers win.

Game 1: 45 pts. (17/30 – 56 FG%) – 76ers win
Game 2: 12 pts. (2/14 – 14 FG%) – 76ers lose
Game 3: 16 pts. (3/14 – 21 FG%) – 76ers lose
Game 4: 42 pts. (16/23 – 69 FG%) – 76ers win

The real question is which James Harden is going to show up for Game 5?

It has been an up-and-down series for the former MVP. However, before the offensive explosion in Game 4, Doc Rivers sent Harden a gospel song titled, “You Know My Name”. I think this goes to show that Rivers’ needed to remind him who he was and how important he is to this team.

In the regular season, Harden averaged 21.0 points and 10.7 assists per game.

In this playoff series, Harden is averaging 28.8 points and 7.5 assists per game.

I know what you are thinking. Harden is either putting up forty or a dud. It’s too risky. In reality, Harden is taking six more shots per game this series than his regular season average. Aside from Joel Embiid, no other Sixers player has provided offense consistently in this series.

It’s plain and simple. Stars take over in big games. If the Sixers want to beat the Boston Celtics, Joel Embiid and James Harden have to score the basketball.

Harden may not put up another 40-point performance, but he is going to stay aggressive and put up at least 25 points.

Best Pick: James Harden over 21.5 points (-115) (2 units)

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Connor Lyon, Philadelphia
Connor Lyon, Philadelphia
Connor is a freelance sports writer that particularly enjoys all Philadelphia sports. Earning his degree from Moravian University in 2022, Connor is now working towards his doctorate in physical therapy. Sports have always been a pertinent aspect of Connor's life. After four years of college football and a lifetime of playing other sports, Connor is set to write for Game-Time Sharks Philadelphia with the perspective of responsible sports betting.

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