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Wizards Must Bounce Back at Home

Updated: .May 12, 2017

By Charles Jay

The Washington Wizards, off a resounding Game 4 victory, had a chance to really extract an advantage in their Eastern Conference playoff series against the Boston Celtics, but they fell flat in Game 5. Now they have to recover and will try to keep the home bias in this series going, in the hopes that maybe they will have a chance to reverse that in a seventh and deciding game. Friday night’s contest gets underway at 8:05 PM ET, and if you are an America’s Bookie customer, you can enjoy two different “Live Betting” options in which to place wagers on the game after it has tipped off.

The Wizards, who have gotten off to some very good starts against the Celtics, found themselves trailing 33-21 at the end of one quarter, as Boston victimized them with a 16-0 run. And things didn’t get a whole lot better from there. Washington actually did a pretty good job defending against Isaiah Thomas, who had just five field goals. But the Cetlics demonstrated that they could get some meaningful offense from another place, as Avery Bradley came up with an unexpected offensive explosion, scoring 29 points on 12 of 19 shooting. What made this a little more remarkable was that he was dealing with two hip pointers at the time.

If the Wizards do a good job with Thomas again, however, could Bradley, who was shooting 34% in the series going into that last game, duplicate those efforts? Maybe somebody like Al Horford, who has been very accurate from the field (and 8-for-9 in Game 5) can step up once again. Certainly, the Celts will have to play better than they have previously this season at the Verizon Center to close this out.

In the NBA playoff betting odds on this game, the Wizards are favored:

Washington Wizards -5
Boston Celtics +5

Over 216 points -110
Under 216 points -110

The Wizards had a poor shooting night; there was no two ways about it. Bradley Beal went 7 for 19, while John Wall was 7 for 17. Bojan Bogdanovic missed six of his seven shots. As a team, they were 38.5%. In this series, up until the start of Game 5, the Wizards’ starting lineup had outscored the Celtics by 45 points. That obviously changed a bit on Wednesday.

Some of the metrics were okay for the Wizards, who pulled down 16 offensive rebounds and got to the line 29 times. But the awful three-point shooting (just 24%) could not be ignored. And the Boston bench was more productive, as Scott Brooks probably had his reserves in there a little too much. Marcus Smart, a guard, had eleven rebounds off the bench, and in 26 minutes, he did not commit a turnover, which was a big relief.

This series has been see-saw, to say the least, and so it doesn’t make a lot of sense to expect a carryover from one game to the next. The home team has won and covered all five games, and the Celtics have stumbled badly in the nation’s capital, getting outscored by an average of 21.5 ppg in the four meetings this season. We’re looking for the trend to continue, as we will lay the points with the Wizards, as the Charles Jay / America’s Bookie Challenge continues on Friday night.

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