Tuesday NBA Odds, Picks, Prediction: Heat vs. Celtics Betting Preview (May 11)
Logan Riely/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Bam Adebayo.
- The Miami Heat and Boston Celtics will go to battle in a rematch of last year's Eastern Conference Finals on Tuesday night.
- The Celtics' season recently got shaken up with the news of Jalen Brown's injury, and Joe Dellera thinks the Heat can take advantage tonight.
- Check out his full betting guide complete with updated odds and a pick below.
Heat vs. Celtics Odds
|Moneyline||-120 / +100|
|Time||7 p.m. ET|
The Heat head to Boston Tuesday to take on the Celtics in a rematch of last year’s Eastern Conference Finals but with different playoff implications.
The season series is now tied at one game apiece after the Heat took Sunday’s game between these two squads. That has now put the Celtics two games back in the loss column of both the Heat and the Hawks with this game as a crucial tiebreaker in their season series with Miami.
At the time of this writing, our playoff projector gives Miami a 48.10% chance of being the 6-seed, while it gives the Celtics a 77.90% chance of being the 7-seed in the East.
Can Boston make a final push to avoid the play-in? If it does, it will start tonight.
The Heat head into this matchup coming off a strong victory over this Celtics team on Sunday. Despite playing relatively mediocre ball this season and posting a point differential of -0.3 on the season, they've rounded into form of late with a point differential of +3.2 per 100 possessions over the last two weeks, per Cleaning the Glass.
A primary reason for this turnaround is the Heat are finally healthy (besides Victor Oladipo) and playing a lineup headlined by Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo.
These two players not only give Miami toughness and tenacity on both sides of the floor, but they are also fundamentally better as a team. In all minutes in which they share the floor, Miami is +3.3 points per 100 possessions, and its defense is elite — it surrenders just 108.7 points per 100, which is in the 85th percentile of all lineups, per Cleaning the Glass.
Besides their two stars, the Heat made a move to acquire Trevor Ariza midseason, and his impact cannot and should not be understated. He's played meaningful minutes, and the Heat are 5.5 points better with him on the court than off of it. He provides valuable defense and has been effective in patrolling the perimeter.
The Celtics suffered a massive blow with the recent news that Jaylen Brown will undergo season-ending surgery on his left wrist. Our squad wrote our initial reactions to this devastating news for Boston. Besides Brown, the Celtics may be without Robert Williams III, who is doubtful with turf toe on his left foot. Keep tabs on his status using our Fantasy Labs Insiders Tool.
The loss of Brown is terrible for a team that entered the season with title aspirations. He's one of the best perimeter players in the league, and his loss will be felt throughout the rest of the season.
Without Brown, the Celtics will need to adjust their rotations and lineups. On the season, the Celtics are +1.8 points per 100 possessions, per Cleaning the Glass. However, without Brown, the Celtics slip to just +1.1 points per 100.
The big issue is that the Celtics will rely heavily on Jayson Tatum, and despite his talent, this is a tough ask because he's not going to play 48 minutes per night for the rest of the season.
There have not been many opportunities or minutes when the Celtics have been without both Brown and Tatum, but I expect Boston to get crushed in non-Tatum minutes moving forward. When Brown and Tatum were off the floor this season, the Celtics were -7.3 points per 100 possessions. It will be tough for Boston to make up for this no matter how well Tatum plays.
This matchup pits two teams trending in opposite directions against each other. The Heat would likely secure at least the 6-seed with a win, and the Celtics are now reeling after losing four of their last five games.
Miami is playing great basketball of late, and if Williams is unable to play for Boston, Adebayo should feast on the interior.
I expect Miami to take this game and win the season series over Boston.
Pick: Heat -1.5.