Indiana Pacers vs Boston Celtics Prediction & Preview - May 23, 2024 | Game 2, 2024 NBA Playoffs

NBA: Playoffs-Indiana Pacers at Boston Celtics
Indiana Pacers vs Boston Celtics Prediction & Preview - May 23, 2024 | Game 2, 2024 NBA Playoffs

The Indiana Pacers vs Boston Celtics matchup is the only 2024 NBA Playoffs game scheduled for Thursday. This will be the second game of their best-of-seven Eastern Conference finals series, with Boston leading 1-0. The Celtics won Game 1 133-128 in overtime on Tuesday.

On that note, let’s take a look at the Indiana Pacers vs Boston Celtics Game 2 preview, including the prediction, starting lineups and betting tips for May 23.

The Celtics hold a 109-85 all-time advantage in the regular season and a 18-12 lead in the playoffs. Boston won Game 1, behind Jayson Tatum’s 36 points and 12 rebounds, while Indiana was led by Tyrese Haliburton’s 25 points and 10 assists.

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Indiana Pacers vs Boston Celtics preview, prediction, starting lineups, odds and betting tips

Game 2 of the Indiana Pacers vs Boston Celtics Eastern Conference finals is scheduled for Thursday, May 23, at TD Garden. The game begins at 8 p.m. EDT and will be televised nationally on ESPN. Fans can stream the game live on fuboTV and NBA League Pass.

Moneyline: Pacers (+325) vs. Celtics (-425)

Spread: Pacers (+9) vs. Celtics (-9)

Total (O/U): Pacers -110 (o224.5) vs. Celtics -110 (u224.5)

Editor's note: The odds could change close to the game. The odds listed were as per available information at the time of writing.

Indiana Pacers vs Boston Celtics preview

The Pacers came as close as defending a 3-pointer by Jaylen Brown to winning Game 1. However, Brown made the shot and extended the game to overtime. Indiana shot just 2-of-8 in overtime and eventually lost the game.

The Pacers did a lot of things right overall, from shooting 53.5% from the floor to moving the ball efficiently (38 assists). They, however, had 21 turnovers, an area they need to improve in Game 2.

The Celtics eked out a narrow win Tuesday but will hope for a more dominant outing in Game 2. Boston shot just 33.3% from beyond the arc. While its starting 5 played great, the bench contributed just 13 points. Indiana’s bench, meanwhile, had 30 points. If the Celtics fix these areas, they should get a 2-0 lead in the series.

Indiana Pacers vs Boston Celtics starting lineups, subs and rotations

The Pacers will be without Bennedict Mathurin (right shoulder). Indiana coach Rick Carlisle should start:

PG: Tyrese Haliburton SG: Andrew Nembhard SF: Aaron Nesmith PF: Pascal Siakam C: Myles Turner

The Pacers’ key substitutes should be Obi Toppin, T.J. McConnell, Isaiah Jackson and Ben Sheppard.

The Celtics continue to be without Kristaps Porzingis (calf injury), while Xavier Tillman (personal) is questionable for the game. Boston coach Joe Mazzulla should start:

PG: Jrue Holiday SG: Derrick White SF: Jaylen Brown PF: Jayson Tatum C: Al Horford

Boston’s key substitutes should be Payton Pritchard, Luke Kornet and Sam Hauser.

Editor’s note: These are predicted starting lineups, which could change depending on the availability of players uncertain to play.

Indiana Pacers vs Boston Celtics betting tips

Tyrese Haliburton has an over/under of 19.5 points. After a solid past two games, he should be good for 19.5 points on Thursday.

Jayson Tatum has an over/under of 30.5 points. While Jaylen Brown became the talk of the town because of his game-tying 3-pointer, Tatum dropped an efficient 36 points. Expect the former Duke alum to keep up the good work and score over 30.5 points in Game 2.

Indiana Pacers vs Boston Celtics prediction

The Celtics are favored significantly to win at home on Thursday. While Boston should get a win, Indiana is expected to put up a good fight. Thus, Boston might not cover the nine-point spread. As evidenced by the first game, this should be a high-scoring series, with the team total in Game 2 going past 224.5 points.

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