Celtics vs. Magic odds: Best NBA picks with C's as surprising underdogs

Celtics vs. Magic odds: Best NBA picks with C's as surprising underdogs

The sportsbooks apparently aren't putting much stock into the NBA standings for the Boston Celtics' matchup with the Orlando Magic.

The Celtics are listed as 1.5-point underdogs for Friday's game against the Magic despite Orlando entering with a 21-24 record, nine games behind the 29-14 C's.

Boston won't look like the same team that blew out the Los Angeles Lakers on Monday, though. Jayson Tatum and Enes Kanter already have been ruled out with injuries, while Jaylen Brown is questionable as he recovers from a sprained ankle.

Do those injuries give the Magic an edge, or will the Celtics prove the sportsbooks wrong by notching their third consecutive win?

Below are our betting predictions for Celtics-Magic, as well as two NBA locks against the spread.

(All odds provided by WestGate Superbook.)

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Boston Celtics at Orlando Magic, 7 p.m. ET

Moneyline: The Celtics have lost four of their last five games to Orlando, which may also explain why they're underdogs. But the Magic have dropped three of four, while Boston rolled without Brown on Wednesday night. I'll take the money on the Celtics (+105).

Point Spread: The beauty of these Celtics (+1.5) is that Tatum and Brown's absence just means more opportunities for Kemba Walker, Gordon Hayward and Marcus Smart. Boston has covered in five of its last seven games despite dealing with several injuries and should get the job done here.

Point Total: The over is tempting considering the Celtics are averaging 126 points over their last four games. But they may have to win ugly here against a Magic team that plays at the third-slowest pace in the NBA. Give me the UNDER on the 212.5 point total

Darren's record picking the Celtics' moneyline, point spread and point total: 60-35-1 (62.5% success rate)

NBA Locks of the Night

Memphis Grizzlies (-1) at Detroit Pistons: The Grizzlies had won seven of eight before the Celtics trounced them Wednesday. They get back on track against a Pistons team that's played just one of its last eight games against a team above .500 -- and gone 4-4 in that span.

Denver Nuggets at New Orleans Pelicans (-4): Even if Zion Williamson doesn't hit four 3-pointers, his presence should energize the Pelicans at home against a Nuggets team missing four key rotation players.

Darren's record picking NBA locks against the spread: 32-31-1 (50% success rate)

Don't miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Celtics-Magic, which begins Wednesday at 6 p.m. with Celtics Pregame Live, followed by tip-off at 7 p.m. You can also stream the game on the MyTeams App.

Celtics' Enes Kanter posts hilarious, spot-on Tacko Fall impression

Celtics' Enes Kanter posts hilarious, spot-on Tacko Fall impression

Enes Kanter remains on top of his TikTok game.

The Boston Celtics center took a break from eating marshmallows off a treadmill to share his hysterical impression of teammate Tacko Fall.

Watch his latest masterpiece below:

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That's about as accurate as it gets.

As much as it seems Kanter is making the most of quarantine life, he's itching to get back onto the court. He recently expressed concern about the NBA season potentially getting cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, which especially would be crushing since the C's are in the mix for a title.

You can hear more from Kanter in the latest episode of "The Enes Kanter Show" below:

Former Celtics star Paul Pierce wants in on virtual game of HORSE

Former Celtics star Paul Pierce wants in on virtual game of HORSE

A virtual game of HORSE? The NBA certainly is trying to get creative amid the coronavirus outbreak.

The NBA and ESPN are working on televising a HORSE competition involving "several high-profile players," according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski. The competitors would take shots from their home gyms and have to match those of other players. 

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Will one of those "high-profile players" be former Boston Celtics star Paul Pierce? It's possible, and he wants in on the competition.

The 10-time All-Star actually could make a splash in the competition -- he shot 44.5 percent from the field and 36.8 percent from beyond the arc in his 19-year NBA career. 

If the 42-year-old ends up competing in the competition, the only thing going against him would be his age. However, if he's anything like Tom Brady then he'll be just fine. 

With the NBA season on pause due to the COVID-19 outbreak, a HORSE competition could be pretty fun to watch.