- What: NBA Opening Night 2022: Philadelphia 76ers vs. Boston Celtics
- Date: Tuesday, October 18, 2022
- Location: TD Garden in Boston, MA
- Time: 7:30 p.m. ET
- How to Watch: TNT
The 2022-23 NBA Season begins on Tuesday, October 18, with two games — one Eastern Conference matchup and one Western Conference tilt. In the East, the Philadelphia 76ers travel to Boston to meet the Celtics at TD Garden. Last year the teams finished with identical records in the Eastern Conference, 51-31.
The Celtics went to the NBA Finals in 2022, losing to the Golden State Warriors in six games. The 76ers playoff run ended in the Eastern Conference Semifinals with a 4-2 series loss to the Miami Heat. Boston topped the Heat in the Eastern Conference Finals in a seven games series.
The 76ers start the 2023 campaign with the Ben Simmons debacle behind them and a seemingly healthy and ready-to-play James Harden in the lineup. Meanwhile, the Celtics will be without free-agent acquisition Danilo Gallinari for the season because of an injury. Boston will also be without head coach Ime Udoka for the year following his suspension by the team for having an improper workplace relationship with a subordinate.
Before we look at the first of two games to be played on the opening night of the 2022-23 NBA Basketball Season — the Philadelphia 76ers vs. the Boston Celtics, check out our guide to betting on the 2023 NBA Finals and our tips for betting on the NBA.
NBA Opening Night 2022-23 Picks: 76ers vs. Celtics
Philadelphia 76ers breakdown
Last year, Joel Embiid was the only player to average more than 30 points per game. The runner-up for the NBA MVP award for a second straight year, Embiid played a career-high 68 regular season games and averaged 33.8 minutes per game. In addition to leading the team in scoring, he was the 76ers top player in rebounds with 11.7.
Philadelphia expects the 33-year-old James Harden to majorly contribute to the team during the 2022 NBA season. Harden played 21 games for the 76ers last season and averaged 21 points per game on 37.7 minutes.
While Embiid and Harden will be the focus of the team, Tyrese Maxey is the player to keep an eye on. Maxey is entering his third NBA season. He started 74 games last year for Philly and put up a respectable 17.5 points per game.
Boston Celtics breakdown
The loss of Danilo Gallinari and Ime Udoka for the season could hurt the Boston Celtics or serve to inspire the team. Knowing that many are looking for the team to implode after a tumultuous offseason, I expect the Celtics to be completely dialed in and motivated during the early days of the 2022 NBA Season.
Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown lead the Celtics. Both players put up over 23 points per game last season. Boston also has the reigning Defensive Player of the Year in Marcus Smart, who might be the second-best defensive player on the team behind Robert Williams. However, Williams will miss the early portion of the 2022 NBA season after knee surgery.
Boston’s big off-season pickup was Malcolm Brogdon. The 29-year-old has played for Milwaukee and, most recently, Indiana. He averaged 33.5 minutes last season with 19.1 points per game.
The 76ers and Celtics played four times during the regular season in 2022. The teams split that series 2-2. Over the entire history of the two teams, Boston holds a 264-195 advantage over Philadelphia.
The Celtics will have home-court advantage, but the team will be missing some key players on its opening night roster. Boston will have a good 2023 NBA Season, but the best bet in this game is to pick the 76ers to upset the Celtics at home on opening night.
Pick: Philadelphia 76ers to beat the Boston Celtics on opening night of the 2023-23 NBA season.
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