Heat vs. Raptors Odds, Pick, Prediction | NBA Betting Preview (March 28)
Cole Burston/Getty Images. Pictured: O.G. Anunoby #3 of the Toronto Raptors drives to the basket against Jimmy Butler #22 of the Miami Heat.
- The Miami Heat face the Toronto Raptors at Scotiabank Arena on Tuesday in a battle between two potential play-in teams.
- The Heat are higher in the standings, but the Raptors are the favorite at home.
- Joe Dellera previews the game, including his betting pick for Heat vs Raptors.
Heat vs. Raptors Odds
|Time||7:30 p.m. ET|
|Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.|
The Miami Heat head to Toronto to play the Raptors in their first game of a back-to-back road set before flying to New York to take on the Knicks. For the Raptors, this is their last game of a four-game homestand, but with no game until Friday, they should be able to play their starters a full allotment of minutes.
This is potential play-in matchup matchup between two teams that are fighting to move up in the East standings. Let’s break down how to bet Heat vs Raptors.
The Heat have listed Kyle Lowry (knee) as questionable for this matchup but remain relatively healthy heading into this game.
Miami has essentially flipped its advanced metrics over the past two weeks. For the bulk of the season, they have been unable to score, averaging just 112.3 points per 100 possessions (25th in the NBA), but over the past two weeks they are scoring 123.6 points per 100, per Cleaning the Glass. Prior to this recent streak, they allowed opponents to score just 112.6 points per 100 (sixth in the league) and over the past two weeks this has ballooned to 119.7.
The major issue for Miami has been the minutes with their starting lineup are bad. When the Heat send Gabe Vincent, Tyler Herro, Jimmy Butler, Kevin Love, and Bam Adebayo out on the floor they are a -2.3 while scoring just 112.2 points and allowing 114.5 per 100 possessions, per Cleaning the Glass.
Not to blame this entirely on Love, but if you remove him and Vincent from the scenario the other four on the floor have a +17.4 point differential and score 122.2 points while allowing just 104.8 per 100 possessions. Miami is desperately trying to make Love fit, but the results just have been underwhelming.
The Raptors have listed Gary Trent Jr (elbow) as questionable and Will Barton (ankle) as Doubtful for tonight’s game, but if they’re unable to go it likely means Nick Nurse just runs an even shorter rotation.
The Raptors have been such an average team this season. They are 37-38 with the 13th ranked Adjusted Net Rating of +1.0 and they are 12th and 13th in Adjusted Offense and Defense, respectively. They are neither particularly good nor particularly bad.
The Raptors have turned up the Heat over the past two weeks though, and they are the third-best in Point Differential over their recent games. They are 5-2 with a +10.8 point differential – they are scoring 124.1 points per 100 possessions while allowing just 113.2, per Cleaning the Glass.
They have the length and versatility on defense to cause problems for opponents and they have enough scoring with Siakam and VanVleet to keep other teams at bay.
This game is incredibly important to both teams and the Raptors try to climb into the No. 7 vs. No. 8 slot of the NBA Play-In Tournament while the Heat try to secure the No. 6 seed and make the playoffs outright.
Given the recent form of both teams, I’ll side with Toronto. Miami has been scorching hot offensively over the last two weeks; however, it’s buoyed by incredible shooting.
They are shooting roughly 5% better than expected and 7% better than their season-long eFG%. They do not have incredible shot-makers and I expect them to struggle against this Raptors’ defense.
Pick: Raptors -3.5
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