Wednesday, March 22 2023
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The 2022-23 NBA season will officially begin on Tuesday night with a showdown between two Eastern Conference contenders, the Boston Celtics and Philadelphia 76ers. Each team will be eager to get off on the right foot with a statement win against another quality foe. 

Between injuries and off-court drama, this has been a tumultuous offseason for the Celtics. Key free agent signing Danilo Gallinari is likely done of the season after suffering a torn ACL, while Robert Williams III was ruled out eight-to-12 weeks with a knee surgery of his own. Plus, Ime Udoka was suspended for the season after an inappropriate relationship with a team staff member, and Joe Mazzulla has been promoted to interim head coach. 

Things have been a bit smoother for the 76ers, who are looking to bounce back from a disappointing second-round exit against the Heat in last season’s playoffs. They added PJ Tucker, De’Anthony Melton, Danuel House Jr. and Montrezl Harrell to bolster a tough, well-rounded supporting cast around Joel Embiid and James Harden. But will that be enough in a loaded East, and will their stars stay healthy? We’ll soon find out.

Philadelphia 76ers at Boston Celtics

  • When: Tuesday, June 18 | 7:30 p.m. ET
  • Where: TD Garden — Boston, Massachusetts 
  • TV: TNT | Live stream: fuboTV (Try for free)  
  • Odds: Celtics -3; O/U 216 (via Caesars Sportsbook)
Featured Game | Boston Celtics vs. Philadelphia 76ers


Celtics: One of the biggest questions for the Celtics heading into the season is how they’ll deal with the absence of Gallinari and Williams — especially considering they want to pace Al Horford through the season. A matchup with MVP candidate Joel Embiid will throw them straight into the fire on opening night. It will be fascinating to see Mazzulla’s lineup decisions; do they stay small as much as possible or will the likes of Luke Kornet, Noah Vonleh and Mfiondou Kabengele get a shot?

Sixers: This season is go time for the Sixers. Embiid is one of the best players in the league, Harden has had a full training camp with the team, they are healthy and the supporting cast is strong. “The Process” has gone through all sorts of iterations, but the ultimate goal was to compete for a title, and now they have a chance to do so. Opening night against the defending East champs will be a real measuring stick for this team and its aspirations. 


Embiid has always been a serious matchup problem for the Celtics, but even more so on Tuesday considering their lack of frontcourt depth. Still, the Celtics will have plenty of motivation to show they can overcome their offseason issues, and will also be playing at home. Pick: Celtics -3



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