Nets vs Celtics Picks and Predictions: Nets Duo Ignites TD Garden

Kyrie and the Nets head to Boston to take on a red-hot Celtics team. Brooklyn is chasing the C's in the standings, but we're going with the Nets to cover the NBA betting spread. Find out why in our Nets vs. Celtics betting and predictions.

Jason Logan: Senior Betting Analyst at Covers
Jason Logan • Senior Betting Analyst
Mar 6, 2022 • 10:07 ET • 4 min read
Kyrie Irving Brooklyn Nets NBA
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports

The Brooklyn Nets will have Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving on the floor together for the first time in almost two months and just the fourth time this season when they visit the Boston Celtics on Sunday.

Brooklyn has an opportunity to remind the East just who the favorite is in the conference when it takes on Boston, which has played some of the best basketball in the league since the start of 2022. The Celtics are 21-8 straight up (14-15 against the spread) since the calendar flipped, including two wins over the Nets – minus the duo of Durant and Irving.

Here are our free NBA picks and predictions for Nets at Celtics on March 6.

Nets vs Celtics odds

This odds widget represents the best odds available for each betting market from regulated sportsbooks.

Boston opened as a 3.5-point home chalk and has climbed as high as -4 at some sportsbooks. The total hit the board as low as 222.5 and has since jumped to 227.5 points overnight.

Use the live odds widget above to track any future line movements right until tip-off and be sure to check out the full NBA odds before betting to ensure you get the best number.

Nets vs Celtics predictions

Predictions made on 3/6/2022 at 8:43 a.m. ET.
Click on each prediction to jump to the full analysis.

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Nets vs Celtics game info

Location: TD Garden, Boston, MA
Date: Sunday, March 6, 2022
Tip-off: 1:00 p.m. ET

Nets vs Celtics betting preview

Key injuries

Nets: Seth Curry G (Probable), Ben Simmons G (Out).
Celtics: Jaylen Brown G (Questionable), Aaron Nesmith G (Out).
Find our latest NBA injury reports.

Betting trend to know

Brooklyn was 15-4 SU and 11-8 ATS (58%) on the road before Durant was injured on Jan. 15. Find more NBA betting trends for Nets vs. Celtics.

Nets vs Celtics picks and predictions

Our side and total predictions are based upon our analysis of the line and total in this game. Our best bet is our favorite pick across all markets.

Spread analysis

The reunion of Durant and Irving isn’t the only return for the Nets on Sunday, as head coach Steve Nash finds his place on the sideline after missing the previous three games – all losses. 

This stop in Boston marks the start of an important three-game road trip for Brooklyn, which will only have the services of Irving for seven of its final 18 games due to vaccine mandates in New York City preventing him from playing at home.

Durant returned with a bang after sitting out a month and a half with a knee injury, dropping 31 points on 10-of-21 shooting in Thursday’s home loss to Miami – a game in which the Nets owned a 16-point first-half lead. He remains the premier scorer in the NBA and alongside Irving (finally), the two of them on the court at the same time will help many of the new members of the Nets find their form.

The Celtics are a stiff defensive test – in fact, the stiffest. Since the start of the new year, Boston owns the lowest defensive rating in the NBA (102.7) but has a big hole (two actually) in its defense heading into this matchup with Brooklyn.  

Versatile guard Jaylen Brown is questionable with an ankle sprain and reserve guard Aaron Nesmith, who injured his ankle in replacement of Brown in the starting five for the Celtics’ win over Memphis on Thursday, is out. 

The 6-foot-6 Brown owns a defensive rating of 101.9 and boasts a plus/minus of 6.0 and he and Nesmith would draw checks on Irving, who has put up point totals of 31, 29, and 38 in his last three showings. Even if Brown is good enough to go, a fresh Irving will attack those tender ankles and loves nothing more to stick it to his former team.

The promise of this Nets team has never been brighter, with Durant and Irving reunited, Nash back in the building, and postseason pressure starting to mount for Brooklyn, which sits No. 8 in the East. We’ll bite on BK with the points Sunday afternoon.

Prediction: Nets +4 (-110)

Over/Under analysis

The Nets are a mess defensively, which showed up in Thursday’s loss to the Heat, which saw Miami put up 113 points on 52% shooting from the floor. While chemistry on the offensive will come with talents like Durant and Irving raising everyone around them, communication on the other end of the floor is an issue – especially with many new faces in the rotation.

Boston could be missing Brown, one of the better two-way players in the league, but has reserve firepower with the likes of Marcus Smart jumping into the starting backcourt. Smart posted 18 points and 12 assists against the Grizzlies. Star forward Jayson Tatum is also reaching supernova status, putting up 33 and 37 points in the past two outings.

The Nets offense is a different animal on the road and there’s no denying the impact Irving has on the attack. Brooklyn’s offensive rating skyrockets from 107.2 inside the Barclays Center to 115.0 (second highest) as a visitor, firing at an effective field goal rate of 54.7% (fourth best) and resulting in nearly six more points per road game.

Brooklyn was 15-4 SU on the road before Durant went down in mid-January, going 11-8 Over/Under in those contests.

Prediction: Over 226.5 (-110)

Best bet

It appeared that Irving may get to play in the Nets’ home games as New York City planned to pull back on vaccine restrictions, however, those mandates remain in place for in-person business which the Nets fall under.

That means Irving is going to have to make the most of these seven remaining road stops. This Sunday's matinee is only the fourth time both Nets superstars have suited up together this season, but the impact will be instantaneous for the Brooklyn offense.

Irving will not only benefit from extra space and less double teams due to Durant drawing the eye of the defense, but if Boston’s Brown is out – or even hobbled – he’s going to have a monster game. Irving is aggressive and loves to attack the rim, getting to the foul line 26 times over the last three games (making 24 of those FTA). With Brown questionable and Nesmith out, the Celtics backcourt could run thin if it gets in foul trouble.

Irving is averaging almost 26 points since February 1 and faces a modest point total of 22.5 in Boston this afternoon. He’s topped the number in each of his last four showings and when you add a dash of spite to the mix (facing his former team), you have to like the Over.

Pick: Irving Over 22.5 points (-130)

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