Utah Jazz vs. Boston Celtics Pick & Prediction MARCH 12th 2024

The Boston Celtics will be looking to extend their road winning streak to three games when they face the slumping Utah Jazz on Tuesday night.

After beating Phoenix 117-107 on Saturday, the Celtics earned a 121-99 victory at Portland on Monday. Jaylen Brown led Boston with 27 points and Jayson Tatum added 26. Sam Hauser came off the bench to make 6 of 10 3-pointers and finished with a season-high 22 points.

“We just played hard, made the right reads on offense, knew our personnel on defense and made a lot of shots,” Hauser said. “I had a rough first half but turned it around in the second half. Once you see a couple (shots) go, the rim gets bigger and you get more confidence.”

Jrue Holiday (knee) and Kristaps Porzingis (hamstring) sat out Boston’s win over Portland. Al Horford scored 11 points against the Trail Blazers but may not be available against Utah since he typically does not play on back-to-back nights.

Tuesday’s contest will be the final game of Boston’s five-game road trip. The Celtics opened the trip with losses to Cleveland (105-104) last Tuesday and Denver (115-109) on Thursday.

Utah has lost two in a row, five of its last six and 10 of its last 12. The Jazz trailed by 39 points in the first half of Saturday’s 142-121 loss at Denver. Utah outscored the Nuggets 44-24 in the third quarter to pull within 14 but failed to get any closer. Denver made 19 of its 32 3-point attempts in the game.

“Obviously when you’re down 39 points at one point it’s a long road back to win the game, but I do think the second half is something we can build on,” Jazz coach Will Hardy said.

Utah’s Lauri Markkanen has missed the last three games with a right quadriceps contusion. Markkanen is averaging 23.1 points, 8.3 rebounds and 2.0 assists in 51 games this season.

Utah’s Walker Kessler returned to the lineup against Denver after missing four games with a right foot sprain. Rookie Keyonte George scored 29 points against the Nuggets, and fellow rookie Brice Sensabaugh made 7 of 11 field-goal attempts for 16 points.

“I think both of those guys (George and Sensabaugh) … the best thing is they show a tremendous amount of confidence in themselves,” Hardy said. “They have a tremendous amount of confidence in each other — the way they speak to each other during the game and encourage each other. The way they feed off each other I think is a positive. They both know there’s a lot of work to be done, though. To get to the level they want to get to, to be a team that’s competing for a championship, those guys are really going to have to up their level.”

The matchup will be the second game between the Celtics and Jazz this season. Utah shot 36.2 percent from the field (34 of 94) and 17.6 percent from behind the 3-point line in a 126-97 loss at Boston on Jan. 5. The Celtics never trailed and led by as many as 36 points in the first half.

Tatum led Boston with 30 points in the win. Utah, which turned the ball over 18 times in the game, received 17 points, five rebounds and five assists from Markkanen.

–Field Level Media

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