NBA Odds: Celtics Begin 2018 With Much-Anticipated Showdown Vs. Cavs

Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart

Photo via Greg M. Cooper/USA TODAY Sports Images

The Boston Celtics will be looking to open 2018 with a fourth straight victory when they renew hostilities with the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday night.

Boston is coming off a narrow 108-105 win over the Brooklyn Nets as 9.5-point home favorites on New Year’s Eve to establish its first three-game win streak in over three weeks and remains 2 1/2 games up on the Toronto Raptors in the Eastern Conference standings going into Wednesday’s Cavaliers vs. Celtics betting matchup at TD Garden.

The Celtics’ year-ending surge comes on the heels of their first shaky stretch of the campaign, claiming just five straight-up wins over an 11-game stretch that ended with a 111-103 Christmas loss to Washington as 4-point home chalk on the NBA odds at sportsbooks monitored by

The club also has struggled at the sportsbooks since posting 16 consecutive SU wins in the early going of the season. The Celtics have amassed a 9-12-1 against the spread record in 22 contests since, including a 2-5-1 ATS run in their past eight dates on home hardwood.

Despite their recent struggles, the Celtics continue to trail only the defending champion Golden State Warriors with a 30-10 SU record, but they have failed to gain ground on the NBA championship odds, where they continue to lag behind the Warriors, Cavaliers and Houston Rockets as a +900 wager.

The Celtics’ lack of success in recent dates with Cleveland is a contributing factor in their position on the NBA championship odds. Boston is a dismal 3-14 SU in its past 17 matchups with the Cavaliers, including a 1-7 SU mark in eight dates at TD Garden, and dropped a 102-99 decision in Cleveland as 4.5-point underdogs on the opening night of the season.

The Cavaliers make their first trip of the season to Boston after posting a 127-110 win over Portland as 8-point home favorites on Tuesday night. With the victory, Cleveland halted a three-game SU slide, but the Cavs have failed to cover in consecutive outings during an uninspiring 4-12 ATS run, including a 2-5 ATS record in seven road dates.

Following Wednesday’s clash with Cleveland, the Celtics close out their current four-game homestand with a visit from the Minnesota Timberwolves on Friday, before kicking off a brief two-game road trip in Philadelphia on Saturday.

The Celtics are unbeaten in 11 straight home dates with the Timberwolves, according to the OddsShark NBA Database, and are 6-1 SU and 5-2 ATS in seven visits to Philadelphia.

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