Celtics NBA Playoffs: Betting odds, picks and schedules

The 2020-21 NBA season will be the 75th season of play for the National Basketball Association (NBA) and it will also be the 75th season for the Boston Celtics. The COVID-19 pandemic created an unusual end to the previous season and forced a delay of the start of this season. Here is a quick review of both.

The End of the 2019-20 NBA Season

League officials suspended the NBA season following games that were played on March 11, 2020. Reports that Rudy Gobert of the Utah Jazz had tested positive for COVID-19 led to the suspension of the season. On March 19, Marcus Smart of the Boston Celtics announced that he had also tested positive for COVID-19. With the NBA having taken a very close monitoring stance related to COVID-19, once players started to reveal positive test results, the league sprung to action and responded swiftly to prevent any further spread of the virus. It wasn't until June 4 when the NBA approved a plan that would see the 2019-20 season continue but with only 22 teams, including the Celtics. All games would be played at the Walt Disney World's ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in what became known as the NBA Bubble. The season was suspending once again on August 26 as a result of a wildcat strike that took place during the NBA playoffs. Play resumed on August 29 with the best-of-seven championship series starting on September 30. The Los Angeles Lakers currently lead the series 2-1 against the Miami Heat. If the series goes the full seven games, the final game will be on October 13.

The Start of the 2020-21 NBA Season

The season was originally set to start on October 21, 2020, but the COVID-19 pandemic forced a suspension of the previous season, and a wildcat strike that erupted once the season restarted caused further delay. These issues pushed the NBA Finals into October 2020. At present, the 2020-21 NBA Season is set to begin on December 25, 2020, with the 2021 All-Star Game set for February 14, 2021, and playoffs to start in April 2021 and the NBA Finals during June 2021. However, the COVID-19 pandemic may change those plans. The 2020-21 NBA Season will be the eighth season the Celtics will play under head coach Brad Stevens who has a win-loss record of 318-246 with Boston out of 564 career games played to date. In each of his seasons with the team, the Celtics have finished in first in their division once, 2nd four times, 3rd once and 4th once.

A Little Bit Of History

The Boston Celtics were founded in 1946 as a charter member of the Basketball Association of America (BAA). They moved to the National Basketball Association in 1949 as part of the merger between the BAA and NBA. The Celtics have to the distinction of having the most NBA titles of all league teams with 17 championships with eleven of those happening between the years of 1957 and 1969. That was during a sports dynasty that was led by Bill Russell, the team center, and head coach and general manager Red Auerbach. The Celtics picked up two more championships in the 1970s with Tom Heinsohn as coach and three more in the 1980s with Larry Bird leading the team. The last championship was won in 2008 following a 22-year drought.

Where Celtic Fans Can Bet On Their Team

If you live in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, or Illinois, you can access legal sportsbooks to place your bets. New Jersey first legalized sports betting in June 2018 which led to the establishment of the first legal New Jersey retail sportsbook just days later. Mobile sportsbooks followed with the first one opening in August 2019. There are currently 10 brick-and-mortar and 15 online sportsbooks operating in the state. The largest monthly handle so far in New Jersey is $667,979,150 which was recorded in August 2020. In Pennsylvania, sports betting was legalized in October 2017 with the first brick-and-motor sportsbook opening in November 2018 and online/mobile sportsbooks launched in May 2019. There are currently 12 brick-and-mortar and 8 online sportsbooks doing business in Pennsylvania. The largest monthly handle so far was recorded in August 2020 at $364,985,422. Illinois is the newest player in legalized sports betting. They made it legal in June 2019 with the first brick-and-mortar sportsbook opening in March 2020 and the first online sportsbooks starting in June 2020. There are a total of 7 brick-and-mortar and 5 online sportsbooks in operation. The largest monthly handle in Illinois was recorded in July 2020 at $52,524,612.

BetMGM Is One of The Most Popular Betting Platforms

Established as a 50/50 joint agreement between MGM Resorts International and UK gambling operator GVC Holdings in July 2018, BetMGM was created as a legalized gambling platform aimed at specific states in the US. Renamed in January 2019 as ROAR Digital, the BetMGM platform resulted in numerous partnerships with professional sports leagues in the United States. A partnership between BetMGM and Yahoo Sports connected the gaming platform with one of the most popular sports websites on the internet. BetMGM has provided Boston Celtic fans in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Illinois with a legal place to bet on their team. Find out more by reading this review.

In Conclusion

COVID-19 has had a very interesting impact on sports entertainment. It forced the suspension of the NBA 2019-20 season delaying it to where the championship series is still underway - months later than it typically takes place. The pandemic has also altered the start of the upcoming NBA season which, may or may not start as planned. One thing is for sure, with concerns related to COVID altering how we watch professional sports, it has given the internet a lot of indirect support. Online sports betting is seeing a renewed interest allowing bettors to support their team without having to leave their home. With the ongoing development of online betting platforms, like BetMGM, for many, there is no need to watch a game in person to become part of the excitement. Online sports betting fills that void.