Indiana Pacers vs. Boston Celtics Game 2 Prediction & Analysis

by | Last updated May 23, 2024 | nba

Indiana Pacers (47-35 SU, 52-42 ATS) vs. Boston Celtics (64-18 SU, 47-42 ATS)

When: Thursday, May 23rd, 8:00 PM (ET)

Where: TD Garden, MA, Boston


Point Spread: Ind +9/Bos -9

Total: 224.5

Money Line: Indiana Pacers +313/-403

Notable Injuries


  • Bennedict Mathurin (Out) Shoulder


  • Kristaps Porzingis (Out) Calf
  • Xavier Tillman Sr. (Questionable) Personal

Heading into game two of the Eastern Conference Finals, the top-seeded Celtics lead the 6th-seeded Pacers 1-0. Tip-off is set for 8:00 PM ET at TD Garden in Boston. The Celtics are favored by -9 points, and the over/under is 224.5 points.

The most recent game of this Pacers vs. Celtics series was a 133-128 win for the Celtics. Heading into the game, the Celtics were favored by 9.5 points, which the Pacers covered. The over/under line was set at 222.5 points, and the teams combined to score 261 points. Jayson Tatum led all scorers with 36 points, and Jrue Holiday added 28 for the Celtics. Tyrese Haliburton had 25 points for the Pacers.

Indiana’s 128 points in the game were a good offensive showing, as their shooting percentage of 53.5% was also above their season average. The Pacers made 13 threes, which was right at their season average. The Celtics shot 33.3% from three, which was below their season average. The game was close heading into the 4th quarter, as the Celtics held a 94-93 lead.

Recent Form

Indiana has an overall record of 47-35 this season, which has them in 6th place in the Eastern Conference. Against the East, they are 32-20 and 11-6 in their division. On the road, the Pacers are 23-26.

As the underdog, Indiana has gone 23-22 this season and is 27-16 ATS as the underdog. They have covered the spread in their last two games as the underdog and have an ATS record of 52-42 for the season.

The Pacers’ O/U record for the season is 52-44, and the over has hit in their last three games. On average, their games have finished with 241.2 points per game, and today’s O/U line is set at 224.5.

In their most recent game, the Pacers lost to the Celtics by a score of 133-128. Indiana was a 9.5-point underdog in that game, and the O/U line was 222.5. This means the teams combined for 261 points.

Today’s O/U line of 224.5 is lower than the Celtics’ season average of 227.5 points per game. The team has gone over the O/U line in their last three games.

Boston’s O/U record for the season is 49-43-1. In non-conference games, their games have averaged 226.7 points per game.

The Celtics’ last game against the Pacers finished with a combined score of 261 points (133-128). The O/U line for that game was 222.5.

In their last four games, the Celtics have been favored and have covered the spread in each of those games. As the favorite, Boston has a record of 71-18 this season and is favored by 9 points today.

Boston’s ATS record for the season is 47-42, including a 25-21 record at home. However, they have failed to cover the spread in their last three home games.

The Celtics are currently in 1st place in the Eastern Conference with a record of 64-18. Against other Eastern Conference teams, they are 41-11 and 15-2 against their division.

The Historicals

Although the Pacers have the better ATS mark across the previous 5 head-head matchups at 4-1, the average scoring margin sits in favor of Boston, as they averaged 124 points per game while allowing 121. A combined average of 245 points per game was achieved in these matchups, leading to an over-under mark of 3-2.


Indiana is the NBA’s top-scoring team this season, averaging 123.3 points per game. They have been even better on the road, at 119.6 points per contest. The Pacers are also in the top five in pace, averaging 101.2 possessions per game.

Looking at Pascal Siakam’s last five games, he is averaging 21 points while hitting 54.2% of his shots from the field. Over this stretch, Tyrese Haliburton has hit 41.7% of his threes and averaged 4 made threes per game. Across his last five games, he is averaging 19.8 points per game.

On the season, the Pacers are 27th in the NBA in points allowed per game at 119.1. In terms of three-point shooting, Indiana is the best in the NBA at 36.6% from beyond the arc. In terms of steals, the Pacers are 16th at 7.7 per game. They are also 8th in the league in blocked shots at 5.9 per game.

Indiana has done a great job of defending the three-point line, as opponents are only making 10.9 threes per game against them, which is tops in the NBA. They are also first in the NBA in three-point attempts allowed per game at 29.8.

One area where the Pacers have struggled is at the free-throw line, as they are 30th in the NBA in made free throws allowed per game at 25.6.

This season, the Celtics are averaging 120.6 points per game, which is the second-best mark in the league. They have been even better at home, averaging 121.7 points per contest. Boston is also the league leader in three-point shooting percentage at 38% and are averaging 16.5 made threes per game.

Jayson Tatum has been carrying the Celtics offense of late, averaging 30.4 points per game over his last five games. Jaylen Brown is also playing well, averaging 22.2 points per game in his last five games. In this stretch, he shot 55.1% from the field. For the season, both Tatum and Brown are among the league leaders in made threes.

As the season comes to a close, the Boston Celtics have been one of the league’s best defensive units, ranking 3rd in points allowed per game at 108.1. This season, they have been particularly stingy at home, giving up just 107.4 points per contest, which is 4th best in the NBA.

One of the reasons for their success is their ability to keep opponents off the free-throw line. On the season, they are allowing just 16.7 made free-throws per game, which is tops in the league. Over their last five games, that number has dipped even further, as they have given up just 8.6 made free-throws per contest.

Despite being one of the league’s best defensive teams, opponents have been able to shoot 34.8% from three-point range against the Celtics this season, which is 15th in the NBA. However, over their last five games, they have done a better job of defending the three-point line, allowing just 38% shooting from beyond the arc.

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Betting Trends

  • Through their last ten road contests, the Pacers offense has averaged 115 points per game while allowing an average of 119. Indiana posted an overall record of 3-7 while going 5-5 ATS.
  • Across their ten previous home games, Boston has an ATS mark of 5-5. Their straight up record in these matchups was 7-3 while averaging 109 points per game.
  • Spanning across their last ten games as the betting underdog, the Pacers have gone 6-4 vs the spread. Their overall record in these games was 4-6.
  • In their last three contests as the favorite, Boston has a poor record vs the spread going 0-3. But, they still put together a straight up mark of 3-0.

Joe”s Pick To Cover The Spread

Even after the Pacers nearly pulled off the upset on Tuesday in Boston, they are stil 9-point underdogs heading into game two. In their previous series, the Celtics have always bounced back with big wins after not playing up to their usual standards. Yet, I am once again going with the Pacers on the spread in this one. Indiana has some big time defensive problems, but their offense gave the Celtics problems in game one. I like Indiana +9.

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