Cavaliers vs. Celtics Game 5 Prediction, NBA Playoff Odds

Edgar Chaput | Updated May 14, 2024

NBA: Playoffs-Boston Celtics at Cleveland Cavaliers

The Boston Celtics handled a weakened Cleveland Cavaliers team in Game 4 and can wrap up the series on Wednesday at home. Boston leads 3-1.

Cleveland
48-34
AT
May 15, 2024, 7:00 PM ET
TD Garden
Boston
64-18
Pointspread +15.5 -105
Moneyline +900
Over / Under o +205.5

0%

Betting Action

67%

Pointspread -15.5 -115
Moneyline -1600
Over / Under u +205.5

0%

Betting Action

67%

A lot changed between Saturday and Monday night for the Cleveland Cavaliers. Their playoff run had mostly operated on a mantra of “if all else fails, trust Donovan Mitchell.” Unfortunately in their case, Mitchell was unavailable for Game 4 due to a calf injury. Ironically, Cleveland put in their second-best showing of the series but still fell to Boston, 109-102. The Celtics now head back home up 3-1 in the series.

For Game 5, the Celtics are expected to do away with the Cavaliers and claim the series. Our NBA Playoff odds have them as -15.5 favourites.

Cavaliers vs. Celtics NBA Betting Odds

Given the disparate status between the sides and that Mitchell might be absent for Game 5 – officially he is listed as day-to-day – the series odds aren’t much to discuss at this stage, especially with Boston leading 3-1. The Celtics taking the series in five isn’t even offered as a prop! Should they require an extra game and finish the job in Cleveland, that is priced at +1200. A seven-game series +5100 for Boston and an incredible +10,000 for Cleveland.

The Cavaliers have not been very good on the road this postseason given their 1-4 record. That said, their lone success was in Game 2 at TD Garden, so perhaps all is not lost.

The Celtics are a curiously average home playoff team. As reported by ESPN in their analysis of Monday night’s contest, the Celtics are the only team in NBA history to play 28 home games over three playoff runs and not have a winning record (14-14).

Cleveland Cavaliers

It can be tough to find moral victories in playoff defeats. Maybe it is slightly easier to do so after losses which don’t eliminate a team from contention because there is an opportunity to bounce back.

When news broke that Mitchell was going to enjoy Game 4 from the bench (just like LeBron James enjoyed it from courtside) the outlook seemed dire for Cleveland. Truth be told, they scrapped their way to a respectable performance. Darius Garland exploded for the first time this series (not that he had a choice), finishing with 30 points and seven assists. Evan Mobley and Caris LeVert continued their decent productivity (19 points each) and Max Strus hit some early first quarter threes that promised a good game. He ended with 15 points.

It’s tough to make much of the performance. The team still lost and now faces incredible odds to win the series. One stat that stands out and probably has much to do with Mitchell’s absence was the 5-for-7 shooting from the free throw line. There simply wasn’t enough muscle in the paint on a night when everything including the kitchen sink needed to be thrown at the Celtics. It was good, but “good” isn’t going to beat Boston.

Boston Celtics

Conversely, this was arguably the most business-like performance of the playoffs from the Celtics. Incidentally, it was the first time in nine postseason games that a final score featured a discrepancy of fewer then 10 points between Boston and an opponent (win or loss).

Again, much of that had to do with an honourable effort put in by the Cavaliers, but Joe Mazzulla’s group never looked especially troubled. Unlike in so many other of their wins this spring, the Celtics never led by more than 15 points. And yet, it’s not as if they looked like they weren’t up for it. Rather, they fully understood what kind of opposition they were dealing with and handled it accordingly. Jrue Holiday (16 points, 6-for-11) once again was a sparkplug in light of Derrick White’s quiet night (five points). As expected, Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown were excellent (33 and 27 points, respectively), performing more than a few sensational shots each.

NBA Playoff Prediction: Who Will Win Cavaliers vs. Celtics Game 5?

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