NBA picks, best bets: Why Celtics can complete sweep of Nets; 76ers-Raptors Game 5 should have more points

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With the 2021-22 NBA regular season now in the books, the basketball betting market is hotter than ever. CBS Sports will be providing daily picks for the duration of the postseason. Sam Quinn will make at least one pick for every game between now and the NBA Finals. All lines courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook.

Featured Game | Brooklyn Nets vs. Boston Celtics

If a team tells you that it’s given up on a series… it’s probably given up on a series. Ben Simmons was expected to play in Game 4 against Boston. That target date had been reported for the past week before it was scratched on Sunday. If Brooklyn believed it was going to win this series, it would use its entire roster. The Nets think they’re going to lose, and as such, they’re holding Simmons back to give him a debut with less pressure next season. The pick: Celtics -1

Featured Game | Philadelphia 76ers vs. Toronto Raptors

The average point-total in this series has been 217, and while that’s propped up by an explosive Game 1, it’s worth noting that the lowest total here has been 205 points. The series is more conducive to offense in Philadelphia than Toronto if you believe in the concept of the home whistle. Joel Embiid took 25 free throws in the first two home games and only 18 on the road. The Raptors are a great defensive team, but this hasn’t been a favorable matchup against Embiid thus far and that should lead to a higher-scoring Game 5. The pick: Over 209.5

Featured Game | Dallas Mavericks vs. Utah Jazz

Utah may have squeaked out Game 4 at home, but the fundamental issues that cost them Games 2 and 3 without Luka Doncic on the floor remain. This is still a team that struggles to stop anyone on the perimeter. With Doncic back and presumably even stronger after a good start to the series and the series shifting back to Dallas for Game 5, the Mavericks should be heavy favorites in this one. The pick: Mavs -3

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