Eastern Conference leaders the Toronto Raptors will fancy their chances of registering a sixth straight victory when they take on the out-of-form Boston Celtics at the TD Garden on Wednesday night (Boston Celtics 5/6, Toronto Raptors EVS – Money Line).

The Raptors, who have got to at least the Conference semi-finals in each of the last three seasons, appear to be the team to beat in the East this term.  Sunday’s dramatic double-overtime win over the Washington Wizards further underlined the battling spirit of Nick Nurse’s side, with small forward Kawhi Leonard particularly catching the eye with 44 points and 11 rebounds (Raptors 7/4 – NBA Eastern Conference outright).

In contrast, the Celtics, who are 9/4 to win Eastern Conference, have lost their last three games, going down 109-102 to the Brooklyn Nets in their most recent contest on Monday.

That result leaves last season’s Conference finalists fifth in the standings and they are now being forced to glance a nervous eye at the teams behind them in the playoff race.

The Celtics will be boosted by the return of point guard Kyrie Irving for Wednesday’s contest after the five-time NBA All-Star missed the defeat against the Nets due to a quad injury.

However, that may not be enough against the Raptors, who will be hoping to have C.J. Miles and Fred VanVleet available following respective hip and thigh issues.

This will be the third time the teams have met this season, with Toronto claiming a 113-101 victory in October, while Boston needed overtime to secure a 123-166 success at the TD Garden the following month.

Odds subject to change.