The NBA playoff action continues, with just the one game happening in the early hours of Friday morning as the Boston Celtics go to the State Farm Arena to take on the Atlanta Hawks in a crucial Game 6 clash.

NBA Betting Tips

  • Boston Celtics @ Atlanta Hawks – Celtics (-5.5) @ 4/5

To be quite honest, I think this game can go either way, but with the way Atlanta stole Game 5 in the TD Garden, I’m expecting a big response from this Celtics team.

Atlanta won 119-117 in Boston on Tuesday despite playing without starting guard Dejounte Murray, the team’s second-leading scorer, who was suspended for a game for bumping a referee at the end of Game 4. He’ll be back for Game 6, and should the Hawks win, it will force a deciding Game 7 in Boston on Saturday.

Murray’s return, however, does pose some questions for Hawks head coach Quin Synder – have the Hawks played better without Murray in the lineup? Or does Murray’s return give Atlanta more substitution freedom?

Trae Young was the hero for the Hawks in Game 5, hitting a huge three-point shot with 2.8 seconds left to ice the game. The Celtics will need to find an answer for the point guard if they are to close out the series in Georgia.

The Celtics have already won on the road during this series – the teams split the first two games of the series at Atlanta. The Hawks won 130-122 in Game 3, but Boston won 129-121 in Game 4.

Boston swept the three-game regular-season series with the Hawks and won twice in Atlanta, so winning at the State Farm Arena is not unfamiliar territory for the Cs. They were one of the best road teams in the regular season, going 25-16.

I think some of Boston’s key players will deliver in the big moments in Game 6. Take Jayson Tatum, for example. He has enjoyed a brilliant season but he was 1-for-10 from behind the three-point line in Game 5, so I’m expecting him to have a much better shooting night for Boston in this game.

I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Hawks win at home, but I think the Celtics will have enough to close out this series in Atlanta, especially since they have won in that arena multiple times this season.

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