The Wizards are 12 games above the .500 mark and are second in the Eastern Conference. How will they fare on the NBA betting lines in Miami against a Heat team that beat them in the first week of the regular season?
The Washington Wizards Can Win Because…
Their level of play is exceptionally good right now. The Wizards have won five in a row and are 9-1 in their last 10 games. Washington gives up only 96.5 points per game and has carved out a positive point differential of 4.5 points. The Wizards are 12-5 against the rest of the Eastern Conference, while Miami is only 8-8. The Wizards might have an average record in road games – they’re only 5-4 away from home – but Miami is 4-8 at home and 8-6 on the road. The Heat just can’t generate the right energy they want in their home building. It’s a place that no longer pops with excitement now that LeBron James is gone.
The other big reasons why the Wizards can win is that Miami is beaten up and very shorthanded. Chris Bosh and Josh McRoberts will both be out for this game, Bosh obviously being the huge loss that’s going to be very hard for the Heat to absorb. Miami did win in Brooklyn against the Nets the other night without Bosh and McRoberts, but reality set in against the lowly Utah Jazz, who came into Miami and won by 18 points. Miami is just not going to be able to hold up against Washington’s depth, skill and power. This is not an even matchup, so keep this in mind when looking at the NBA odds.
The Miami Heat Can Win Because…
They've already beaten Washington at home and can do so again. The Heat won the first game of the season between these teams, scoring 107 points. On that night, the Heat were adjusting to being without LeBron and functioned well. Now, the Heat can adjust to being without Bosh. Dwyane Wade knows he has to be the man on the Miami roster, the one who shoulders the scoring workload. He’s now free to be the lead actor on the team, much as he was in the few years before LeBron and Bosh arrived in the fall of 2010. Wade scored 42 points against Utah the other night. He’s going to take on the burden of carrying this team, and with a 42-point performance, he’s shown that he’s capable. He just needs a little more help from his teammates. No one else scored more than 11 points in that loss to the Jazz. That’s not going to happen regularly – you can expect other players to contribute 15 or 17 points, hitting just a few more shots than they did against Utah.
Miami also has the tenth-best defense in the NBA. This team doesn’t have to win with offense, It can win with defense.
The Heat are shorthanded and that’s going to be too much for them to overcome. Washington is playing well and the Wizards don’t seem likely to let down their guard against the defending Eastern Conference champions. Take them with your NBA picks.
NBA Pick: Washington -4 at BetOnline