The Boston Celtics will look for a win to stave off elimination when they host the Atlanta Hawks in Game 6 of their first-round playoff series on Thursday as 1 1/2-point betting underdogs at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.
Boston extended its current playoff losing streak on the road to five games with an ugly 110-83 loss Tuesday, giving Atlanta a 3-2 edge in the series heading into Thursday night’s Hawks vs. Celtics betting matchup at TD Garden.
The Celtics own a 4-13 straight-up record over their past 17 playoff contests, including just one SU win in their past nine playoff road games according to the OddsShark NBA Database.
Tuesday’s lopsided defeat also extended their stretch of futility in visits to Atlanta, where they are now winless in their past seven overall, and eight of their past nine in the postseason.
Fortunately for the Celtics, they have enjoyed considerably more success against the Hawks on home court, where they have claimed 10 straight SU decisions in the postseason dating back to 1988, and have covered the spread in seven of their past nine.
Boston also is 21-5 SU overall in its last 26 clashes with the Hawks at TD Garden, but has failed to string together more than two straight home wins over Atlanta since early 2013.
Not surprisingly, the Celtics’ dire situation is reflected in NBA series prices at the sportsbooks, where Atlanta has moved to a heavy -1000 favorite, while Boston is pegged as a +550 longshot to stage a comeback.
However, not all hope is lost for Boston, which has demonstrated resilience with a solid 8-3 SU record in home games immediately following a SU loss on the road, including a 1-1 SU mark in such contests against Atlanta.
For the Hawks, Game 6 provides an opportunity to end a playoff series losing streak against Boston that dates back to 1958, when the franchise was located in St. Louis.
It also would help Atlanta shake off its recent inconsistent play, which has seen it go 6-6 SU in its past 12 overall, 4-8 against the spread, following a 14-3 SU run during which it held opponents to just 91.1 points per game in the wins.
A series victory by Atlanta also would set the stage for a second-round matchup with the top-seeded Cleveland Cavaliers, and a chance to avenge a bitter four-game sweep by the Cavs in last year’s Eastern Conference finals.
Thumbnail photo via Brett Davis/USA TODAY Sports Images
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