The eyes of the basketball world turn to the Chase Center on Thursday evening. The Golden State Warriors host the Boston Celtics for Game 1 of the 2022 NBA Finals. The Warriors advanced with a win over Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks in the Western Conference finals. The Celtics toppled the Miami Heat on the road in Game 7 over the weekend, setting up a high-profile showdown with an NBA title on the line.
Tip-off is at 9 p.m. ET in San Francisco. Caesars Sportsbook lists the Warriors as 3.5-point home favorites, while the over-under, or total number of points Vegas thinks will be scored, is 212.5 in the latest Celtics vs. Warriors odds. Before you make any Warriors vs. Celtics picks or NBA predictions, you need to see what SportsLine expert Zack Cimini has to say.
A Las Vegas handicapper who’s never afraid to buck conventional wisdom, Cimini excels in multiple sports. Over the past 33 NBA picks, Cimini is 22-11, returning almost $800 to $100 players. He is also on an amazing 38-16-1 run with his last 55 against-the-spread picks involving the Celtics, returning almost $1,800 to $100 players.
Now, Cimini has set his sights on Celtics vs. Warriors, and just locked in his picks and NBA playoff predictions. You can head to SportsLine now to see his picks. Here are several NBA odds and betting lines for Warriors vs. Celtics:
- Celtics vs. Warriors spread: Warriors -3.5
- Celtics vs. Warriors over-under: 212.5 points
- Celtics vs. Warriors money line: Warriors -160, Celtics +140
- Celtics vs. Warriors tickets: See tickets at StubHub
- BOS: The Celtics are 12-6 against the spread in playoff games
- GSW: The Warriors are 9-7 against the spread in playoff games
Featured Game | Golden State Warriors vs. Boston Celtics
Why the Celtics can cover
Boston has offensive strengths, headlined by the presence of shot creators in Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum on the wing. The Celtics are keyed by defense, however, and that was the case dating back to the regular season. Boston led the NBA in defensive rating during the regular season, giving up only 106.2 points per 100 possessions to opponents. The Celtics also led the league in 3-point defense (33.9 percent), two-point defense (49.7 percent), field goal percentage allowed (43.4 percent), and assists allowed (21.6 per game), with top two marks in blocked shots (5.8 per game) and points allowed in the paint (42.5 per game).
Boston created 13.8 turnovers per game during the regular season, and Golden State was the second-worst team in the NBA in ball security, committing a turnover on 15.0 percent of offensive possessions. The Celtics are also lights-out on defense in the playoffs, giving up only 1.05 points per possession and 43.3 percent shooting to opponents.
Why the Warriors can cover
The Chase Center has been kind to the Warriors in the playoffs, with Golden State posting a 9-0 record and an obscenely impressive net rating of +14.4 points per 100 possessions. The Warriors are tremendous on defense, ranking in the top three of the NBA in myriad categories during the regular season, and Golden State also has the best offense in the 2022 NBA playoffs. The Warriors are scoring more than 1.16 points per possession against postseason competition, No. 1 in the league, and Golden State also leads the league in postseason assists (28.3 per game) and assist percentage (66.9 percent).
The Warriors are shooting 49.3 percent from the field and 37.9 percent from 3-point range in the playoffs, and Golden State has an edge on the offensive glass in securing 28.2 percent of missed shots. The Warriors also have the best shooter in NBA history in Stephen Curry, who led the league in 3-pointers this season, and Golden State ranked in the top eight of the NBA in assist rate, assists per game, two-point shooting, three-pointers per game, 3-point accuracy, and fast break points during the 2021-22 regular season.
How to make Warriors vs. Celtics picks
For Game 1 of the 2022 NBA Finals, Cimini is leaning under on the point total, but he also says a critical X-factor makes one side of the spread a must-back. He’s only sharing what it is, and which side of the Warriors vs. Celtics spread to back, at SportsLine.
So who wins Celtics vs. Warriors? And which side of the spread is a must-back? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the Warriors vs. Celtics spread you need to jump on Thursday, all from the expert that has crushed his NBA picks, and find out.