Boston Celtics vs Atlanta Hawks Game 1 Prediction and Odds: 2023 NBA Playoffs

The last season’s beaten NBA Finalists and East’s number 2 seed Boston Celtics will start their title push in the 2023 Playoffs with the second-best NBA playoff odds 35/10 (36.00) when they host the play-in winners Atlanta Hawks this Saturday afternoon in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference first round. The Celtics are the clear favourites and the overall opinion is that they will breeze past this series in 4 or 5 games. Below we have looked in more detail at game 1 of this matchup.

These odds from William Hill were correct at the time of writing.

Boston Celtics
Mandatory Credit: Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports/Sipa USA
By Icon Sport

Boston Celtics vs Atlanta Hawks – Game Predictions

Celtics feel this could be their year and they will certainly seek a quick start in game 1 as they try to assert their will on the shaky all-season Hawks. The Garden will certainly be rocking and ready to help in any way possible as the teams take to the court for the start of their 2023 NBA Playoff runs.

Prediction 1: Over 119.5 Celtics Points

Celtics scored over 119.5 points in all 3 H2H clashes during the regular season. They even got 120 points on the final day of the regular season when resting all of their regulars. With the Hawks having the 6th weakest defence in the entire NBA we just can’t see them slowing down the Celtics now when Boston’s stars will be eager to shine their brightest as the playoffs begin on home soil.

Prediction 2: Tatum Under 3.5 3PT FG

Celtics leader Jason Tatum is expected to have a chip on his shoulder after the failure he was in last year’s NBA Finals. We certainly, expect him to dominate against the Hawks but we think he will try to get his teammates involved and facilitate more in this first round. This will be wise as he will preserve precious energy for the later matchups when his scoring will be needed more.

In any case, Tatum averaged 3.2 3pt FG during the regular season (6th in the NBA). He matched this 3.2 average in the 3 games vs the Hawks. That’s why we don’t think now in a game 1 situation he will go over 3.5 made threes. We simply don’t think he will need to do that. What we expect however is for his assists to be more than his season average of 4.6.

Celtics vs Hawks Preview – Can the Hawks defend?

The Hawks come into this contest as the heavy underdogs so they don’t have much pressure on them. However, they can stand a chance of an upset only if they find a miraculous way to improve their defending, especially in halfcourt where they were 4th bottom in the entire league during the regular season.

Boston Celtics

Boston had a solid regular season 57-25, which left them only a game behind the best record in the entire NBA. Celtics had the third-best form in the 23 games after the All-Star break (15-8), so they clearly come into the playoffs feeling well and most importantly looking healthy.

Atlanta Hawks

Atlanta barely made it a .500 season (41-41) after constant ups and downs on the way. Trae Young is not leading his crew very well and the Hawks front office already started talking about a potential trade involving him this summer. Since the All-Star break the Hawks continued to be nothing more than average at 12-11. Clearly, this is where they are at this stage of their development – an average team.

Celtics vs Hawks Head-to-Head Record In 2023

Celtics had no struggle running away with the wins in all 3 regular season meetings between the sides. The Hawks never found a way to slow down Celtics and conceded 120+ points in each of these 3 losses – 101-126, 125-134 and 114-120. The last of those was on the final day of the regular season when both teams rested their regulars.

Boston Celtics vs Atlanta Hawks Game Details

Celtics vs Hawks

  • Date & Time: Saturday, April 15, 2023, 21:00 GMT
  • Venue: TD Garden – Boston, Massachusetts
  • Where to watch the match in the UK: Sky Sports (TV), NBA Live Pass, or other live streams

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About the author


Iskra had a promising, at least she believed so, tennis and volleyball careers as a junior but a series of injuries ended her hopes to become a professional athlete very early.

Instead, she focused all her energy on her other passion, writing. For over a decade, Iskra had been a freelance sports writer. Football, basketball and tennis are the main fields of her expertise.