Celtics vs. Pacers Game 3 Prediction, NBA Playoff Odds

Edgar Chaput | Updated May 24, 2024

NBA: Playoffs-Indiana Pacers at Boston Celtics

With two games in the books and Boston leading the series 2-0, the East Finals head to Indiana where the Celtics and Pacers will play Game 3 on Saturday night.

May 25, 2024, 8:30 PM ET
Bankers Life Fieldhouse
Pointspread -7.5 -105
Moneyline -300
Over / Under o +220.5


Betting Action


Pointspread +7.5 -115
Moneyline +230
Over / Under u +220.5


Betting Action


After a tense, narrow affair in Game 1, the Boston Celtics more closely resembled their usual selves in Thursday’s Game 2, which they won 126-110. Known for their attack but also their defence, the Celtics played a solid two-way game all night long, whereas the Pacers couldn’t push as hard as they had in the first match. Worse, Indiana finished the game without the services of Tyrese Haliburton, who injured left leg soreness.

For Game 3, the NBA Playoff odds still believe in the Celtics but expect a closer contest this time. Boston is pegged at -6.5.

Celtics vs. Pacers NBA Betting Odds

From a betting perspective, the Eastern Conference Finals have gone from bad to worse for the Pacers. The Game 2 defeat has downgraded their odds of claiming the series from +1000 to +3000. Coming back to win four straight is priced at an incredible +10000, and a 4-3 series win is +5000.

A Boston sweep has gone from +240 to -140, a 4-1 series victory is +175 (previously +140), six matches is +800 (previously +450), and a seven-game win is priced at +1700 (previously +650).

There is a bit more clarity on Kristaps Porzingis’ calf situation. He most likely will not suit up for Saturday’s match but could be available for Game 4, which is scheduled for Monday night.

Regarding Haliburton, all eyes are on his left leg. Without him, the Pacers have almost no chance of staging a series comeback. We all await what exactly his status is. At of Friday morning, he may even play on Saturday.

Boston Celtics

After Game 1, the word in the media was that the Celtics “escaped” with a win. This is ironic given that so few were impressed with the ease with which they dispatched their first two playoff opponents, but a close win against a healthy team was an “escape.”

Boston took matters into its own hands and played better the second time. They by no means blew the doors off the Pacers, but Game 2 was a more comfortable victory. Jaylen Brown followed his Game 1 heroics with a 40-point night. Only half the job in this conference final is complete, but he has already carved his name as one of its major forces. He was brilliantly aggressive when driving to the basket. Jayson Tatum is struggled somewhat to leave his mark (23 points, 1-for-7 from three), but in his defence he keeps coming up with baskets in big moments. Derrick White also finished with 23 points but was more efficient, shooting 8-for-15.

Boston’s defence is arguably what rebounded the most, no pun intended. There were a handful of occasions when last-second interceptions and stout play off the glass allowed the Celtics to execute fast break points.

Indiana Pacers

It’s not as though the Pacers haven’t been in this situation before. They lost Game 1 of the first round and still claimed the series. They fell in the first two matches of the second round and eventually clawed back for a 4-3 win. This runs the risk of featuring a very different outcome.

Indiana’s defence is struggling with the plethora of Boston’s attacking options. Whether it was Tatum’s 35 points in Game 1, Brown 40 points in Game 2, or any of the many other role players (like former Pacer Oshae Brissett), Indiana has looked mediocre on the defensive end twice now. They also committed significant turnovers (16) that led to key points the other way. Pascal Siakam followed up a solid first match with a good second one (28 points) but players who did well on Tuesday struggled on Thursday, like Aaron Nesmith (nine points) and Myles Turner (nine points).

The bench scored an impressive 40 points, led by Obi Toppin’s 11. Perhaps that is the secret to Indiana keeping their season alive.

NBA Playoff Prediction: Who Will Win Celtics vs. Pacers Game 3?

NBA Predictions