Celtics’ Payton Pritchard (heel) out vs. Timberwolves


Boston Celtics guard Payton Pritchard (heel) has been downgraded to out for Wednesday night’s road game against the Minnesota Timberwolves. This will be Pritchard’s 25th game missed so far this season.

Other players listed on Boston’s injury report include Danilo Gallinari (ACL) and Robert Williams III (hamstring). Both Gallinari and Williams remain out indefinitely. Gallinari could make his season debut in the playoffs.

Referring to a couple of NBA betting sites, the Celtics possess second-shortest odds to win the championship. Sportsbooks had Boston at the top for the first 60 games of the regular season. However, the Milwaukee Bucks are now the betting favorite.

Through 45 appearances this season, Pritchard is averaging career lows of 4.7 points, 1.5 rebounds, 1.0 assist, and 12.5 minutes per game. Plus, the third-year guard is shooting 39% from the floor and 33.1% beyond the arc.

Celtics coach Joe Mazulla announced last week that Pritchard would likely miss the team’s six-game road trip. The Oregon product hasn’t played since last Monday’s 118-114 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Celtics guard Payton Pritchard (heel) downgraded to out against Timberwolves for Wednesday night’s road game

On Jan. 3, in Boston’s 150-117 loss against the Oklahoma City Thunder, the guard scored a season-high 17 points in 15 minutes off the bench. In addition to logging one block, Pritchard shot 7-of-13 (53.8%) from the field and knocked down three 3-pointers.

Furthermore, the Celtics are 5-5 in their past 10 contests. Monday night’s 111-109 defeat to the Houston Rockets was the last straw for multiple sportsbooks. Milwaukee is now above Boston on the NBA championship odds list for the first time this season.

While Boston is 11-1 against Minnesota in its previous 12 meetings, the team is just 2-4 in the last six games. On top of that, the C’s are 7-2 in their past nine matchups versus Western Conference opponents. Not to mention, the Celtics are 9-2 in their last 11 encounters against Northwest Division teams.

Per ESPN’s Basketball Power Index, Boston has a 67.1% chance of defeating the Timberwolves. Sportsbooks show the Celtics as 5-point favorites on the road at Target Center. Boston is 44-19 as a favorite this season.

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