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Miami Heat vs. Boston Celtics: Game 3 betting predictions and odds for Apr. 27

Publish Date: 04/27/2024
Fact checked by: Allan Howe
Key Points
  • The series is tied 1-1 between the Boston Celtics and the Miami Heat
  • The Celtics are -9.5 point-spread favorites for Game 3

It's Game 3 of the NBA Playoffs Eastern Conference first-round between the Boston Celtics (64-18, 37-4 home), ranked No. 1, and the Miami Heat(46-36, 24-17 away), ranked No. 8.  In a classic rematch of the 2023 Eastern Conference Finals, the series is tied 1-1 between Boston and Miami. In a game two matchup at the TD Garden in Boston, the Heat stunned the Celtics 111-101. With Boston as the heavy point-spread favorite, Miami finished with a record-breaking 23 made three-pointers and 53.5 percent from deep. With the first two games in Boston, game three will occur in the Sunshine State. With several injuries and a short-handed roster, can Miami take a 2-1 series lead?

 (Photo by Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images)

First, let's break down games one and two, which were drastically different. In the first meeting, Boston destroyed Miami, 114-94. Without stars Jimmy Butler and Terry Rozier, the Heat lost their footing, were dominated on the perimeter and rebounds, and found themselves in a 34-point hole. Trailing 60-45 at the half, the Celtics were too much for Miami. Rather than Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown playing hero ball, Boston had five players finish with points in double-figures.

MIAMI ARE ONCE AGAIN UNDERDOGS IN GAME 3

In game 2, Miami, led by head coach Erik Spoelstra, out-coached and outplayed Boston. Commanding a 111-101 victory, the Heat slowed Boston, annihilating Kristaps Porzingis in the paint. Limiting Boston to 12 three-pointers made, Miami took advantage of poor screen navigations, switching, and defensive coverages. Favored by 14.5 for the first two games, both teams covered in games one and two.

Despite injuries, Miami heads into game three with a vengeance and a vastly different approach. Celtics big man Kristaps Porzingis was held 1-9 from the field, and their defense was suffocating. With the Celtic's inability to create actions and limit turnovers, Miami snuck away with a huge victory. Brown and Tatum were forced to play hero ball for the Celtics after combining for 61 points. As for Miami, all five of Spoelstra's starters finished with points in double figures.

THE MIAMI HEAT CANNOT BE COUNTED OUT

Game 3 will be the story of execution, coaching, and adjustments rather than the talent on the floor. Never underestimate the Miami Heat; this is the second consecutive season they've faced the Celtics as the No. 7 and 8 seeds.

Let's dive into how to bet on tonight's game, where I've compiled all the necessary data, odds, and statistics to facilitate informed betting predictions for Saturday, Apr. 27.

BOSTON CELTICS VS. MIAMI HEAT FAN DUEL ODDS FOR APR. 27

MONEY LINE

  • BOSTON CELTICS: -430
  • MIAMI HEAT: +340

SPREAD

  • BOSTON CELTICS: -9.5 (-112)
  • MIAMI HEAT: +9.5 (-108)

OVER/UNDER (TOTAL)

  • OVER: 210 (-110)
  • UNDER: 210 (-110)

BEST ODDS FOR BOSTON CELTICS VS. MIAMI HEAT

  • Caesars currently has the best Celtics moneyline odds at +430
  • The Boston Celtics are 9.5-point- favorites against the Miami Heat.  DraftKings currently has the best odds currently at (-110)
  • The Miami Heat are the underdogs by 9.5 points to cover the spread tonight. FanDuel currently has the best odds at -108 for Miami to cover the spread
  • DraftKings currently has the best odds for the total, which is set at -110 for the over and Caesars for the under (-105).
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MIAMI HEAT VS. BOSTON CELTICS INJURY REPORT

BOSTON CELTICS INJURY REPORT

  • C: LUKE KORNET, PROBABLE: (CALF)

MIAMI HEAT INJURY REPORT

  • G: TERRY ROZIER, OUT: (NECK)
  • G: JOSH RICHARDSON, OUT: (RIGHT SHOULDER)
  • G: DELON WRIGHT, QUESTIONABLE
  • F: JIMMY BUTLER, OUT:(SPRAINED MCL)

BOSTON CELTICS POST-SEASON STATISTICS & BETTING TRENDS

  • *ATS = Against the Spread
  • *O/U = Over/Under
  • Best out of 16 current playoff teams

Last 5 Games 3-2
Last 10 Games 7-3
Season ATS Record 42-37-5
Season O/U Record 43-39-2
Last 5 Games ATS 2-2-1
Last 10 Games ATS 3-5-2
Last 5 Games O/U 4-1
Last 10 Games O/U 7-3
Offensive Rating (Rank) 116.8 (5)
Defensive Rating (Rank) 111.4 (8)
Points Per Game (Rank) 107.5 (8)
Pace (Rank) 92 (T-11)
Opponent Points Per Game (Rank) 102.5 (8)
Three-Point Percentage (Rank) 42 % (2)
Rebounds Per Game (Rank) 41.5 (11)
Last 10 Games ATS Wins: OKC (-12), Charlotte (-8), Miami (-14.5)

MIAMI HEAT POST-SEASON STATISTICS & BETTING TRENDS

  • *ATS = Against the Spread
  • *O/U = Over/Under
  • Best out of 16 current playoff teams

Last 5 Games 3-2
Last 10 Games 6-4
Season ATS Record 41-41-2
Season O/U Record 36-48-0
Last 5 Games ATS 3-2
Last 10 Games ATS 7-3
Last 5 Games O/U 3-2
Last 10 Games O/U 7-3
Offensive Rating (Rank) 111.4 (9)
Defensive Rating (Rank) 116.8 (12)
Points Per Game (Rank) 102.5 (9)
Pace (Rank) 92 (T-11)
Opponent Points Per Game (Rank) 107.5 (9)
Three-Point Percentage (Rank) 43.8 (1)
Rebounds Per Game (Rank) 37 (15)
Last 10 Games ATS Wins: Houston (-3), Indiana (+3), Atlanta (-3.5), Toronto (-14), Philadelphia (+5.5), Chicago (-2), Boston (+14).

 

HEAD-TO-HEAD STATS: CELTICS VS. HEAT

Season Matchups:

Game 1: Boston 119, Miami 111( Miami +9, Over 217.5)
Game 2: Boston 143, Miami 110 (Boston -8.5, Over 225)
Game 3: Boston 110, Miami 106 (Miami +8, Under 225)
Playoffs Game 1: Boston 114, Miami 94 (Boston -14.5,Under 210)
Playoffs Game 2: Miami 111, Boston 101 (Miami +14, Over 205.5)

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WHY THE MIAMI HEAT CAN COVER THE SPREAD

I foolishly counted out the Miami Heat in the last game, which is something I'll never do again. If you didn't know, the Heat defeated the Celtics as the no. seven-seed last year to reach the NBA Finals. Erik Spoelstra is one of the best in the business and has the innate ability to compete at the highest level, no matter who's on the roster. With injuries to Jimmy Butler and Terry Rozier, it's the next player-up mentality for the Heat. And in game 2, it was a collaborative effort among Miami's starting five.

Although the Celtics held a 61-58 halftime lead, it was the Heat who continued their hot streak over the second half. The Heat, deemed doomed after failing to pull off an off-season trade for Damian Lillard, held several Celtics in check. How many times have you seen Porzingis and Brown combine for a total of 14-32 field goal shooting? With Herro leading the way for Miami with 24 points, Caleb Martin and Bam Adebayo poured in 21 a piece.

MIAMI COVERED THE SPREAD AS 14 POINT UNDERDOGS IN GAME 2

7-3 against the spread in their last ten games, Miami has now been able to cover three decent spreads against Boston in the regular season and now in the playoffs. With a 16-25 record against the spread at home, the Heat can clearly hang with the C's, with or without Jimmy Butler. With Bam Adebayo a force on both sides of the court, he's coming off a 21-point, 10-rebound game 2. If anyone has been dominant, it's been Adebayo with his mid-range and stifling defense.

Aside from Adebayo, Spoelstra has a plethora of players who can hit from deep, including Herro, Duncan Robinson, Delon Wright, Highsmith, and Jaime Jaquez Jr, among others. While they lack star power right now, they can strike at any time with the right coaching. Any team that can disrupt Joe Mazzullas offense has to be considered to cover.

WHY THE BOSTON CELTICS CAN COVER THE SPREAD

The Miami Heat came out firing on all cylinders in game 2, and the Celtics were simply unprepared. Given their lack of success at home, the Heat only covered the spread 16 times at the Kaseya Center. Now that the first two games are out of the way, Boston will make adjustments. 19-19-3 against the spread on the road, the Celtics didn't have an answer last match. Although they had difficulty switching on defense and navigating screens, they couldn't keep up with the Heat's shot margins.

When you think about it, the Heat had to shoot a franchise playoff-record 23 threes to stay in front of the Celtics by just 10 points. I don't see that happening, and the Celtics were a top team on both ends of the floor this season. Leading with a scoring margin of +11.3 on the season,  the Celtics must remember how they defeated the Heat in game 1. With the addition of Jrue Holiday and Kristaps Porzingis, Boston can dominate this game with less hero ball by the Jays and more ball movement.

On paper, this team has the star power to blast the Miami Heat out of the water by nine points or more. Their efficient spacing, rim protection, and ability to read defenses are better than most teams in the NBA. It should be game over if they can get all five starters involved. The question is, which version of Mazzulla ball will we see today?

FINAL CELTICS-HEAT PICK & PREDICTION

Overall, an underdog favored by at least 14 points or more hasn't won by that large margin in nearly 30 years. However, I was concerned with Joe Mazzullas's game presser. While he claimed some shots were contested, most of them weren't. And in response to Miami's 23 threes, Mazzulla states the offense needs to step up. While I understand the shot margins, the Heat have repeatedly shown that they are a different team in the playoffs.

With the matchup set to take place in Miami, it's all about the "heat culture." No matter who's on the floor, Spoelstra has an innate ability to adjust to every game and adapt to the game plan. I do think the Celtics will adjust and win this game outright. However, 9.5 is a large spread, especially for a road team in the playoffs.  I cannot pick Boston to cover that many points after their poor performance in game 2. I also want to add that I wouldn't be surprised if the spread expands to 10 points or more.

FINAL CELTICS-HEAT PICK & PREDICTION: MIAMI HEAT +9.5 (-108)

To keep yourself updated on the newest happenings, be sure to check out our Betting News Section. We've organized all the updates so you can find all you need, in one convenient location.

 

 

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