We finally have the first match-up in the Eastern Conference. The Boston Celtics, who finished the Milwaukee Bucks in seven host the Philadelphia 76ers. The 76ers finished the Miami Heat in five games to advance to the Conference semifinals. This is a series that features two of the more historical franchises in the NBA. Philadelphia comes into this series as one of the more talked about teams in the playoffs. If healthy, some are picking them to make the NBA Finals. With Boston, we know they’re without Kyrie Irving and Gordon Heyward. In Game 7, Jaylen Brown didn’t return after injuring his hamstring and he’ll probably miss at least the first game. Despite finishing off the Bucks without Brown, this will be a tougher match-up for the Celtics this series. Who do you see coming out the victor of this series and advancing to the Conference Finals?
Like I mentioned above, the Celtics will be without Jaylen Brown for possibly a week. Al Horford had a tremendous series against the Bucks, but this will be different. Horford will have to contend with Joel Embiid, who’s one of the better defenders in the league. We could also get the match-up of Ben Simmons taking on Jayson Tatum, which could be exciting. Despite having so many injuries, Brad Stevens is one of the best coaches in the league. The 76ers have had an ample amount of time to rest after finishing the Heat in five games. While Embiid and Simmons receive all the attention, the role players have come up huge for the Sixers. They will have to continue knocking down those opener 3s to advance to the Conference Finals.
In this series, Boston will rely on their defense, which is one of the best in the league. With the return of Marcus Smart, he’ll add to the Celtics defense. Marcus Morris could be a key in this series because he’s great on offense and the Celtics will need that. As far as Philadelphia goes, everything runs through Simmons and Embiid. Coach Stevens will probably come up with a way to make Simmons shoot and get the ball out of his hands. The shooters for the Sixers will have to knock down shots for them to win and I think they will. I’m taking the 76ers to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals.
Philadelphia Wins Series 4-2
Are you ready for this series between the Celtics and 76ers? Will the Jaylen Brown hamstring injury haunt the Celtics? Can Simmons and Embiid continue the process to advance to the next round? Who do you have winning this series? Leave a comment below.