The Miami Heat might have had an inkling their season would have been like this, but people putting together NBA picks and the New York Knicks had to be stunned they would be this dreadful at this juncture.
Phil Jackson has issued more than one “mea culpa” for the state of the Knickerbockers (10-41) and NBA handicappers working the betting odds have made people some cash by playing against New York as their 21-29 ATS shows.
Either the Knicks or Miami (22-26-2 ATS) will have a four-game losing streak after tonight, let’s try and figure out who has the best chance to be in the win column.
New York in Fill Blown Rebuild Mode
In the Big Apple, the word on the street is Phil Jackson’s offensive philosophy of wanting to use –triangle offense – concepts is about as relevant as AC/DC to music today. Sure they worked when you had great players, but when exposed to the world in 2015 with a rag-tag collection of players, it just does not hold up well.
The Zen Master has stated he wants to build a team, not just spend money to have individual great talent. However, that is looking into the future and right now it is Carmelo Anthony and the wanna-be’s. Jose Caulderon and Amar’e Stoudemire are serviceable professionals past their prime and the roster is either too young to tell like Tim Hardaway Jr. or merely has players that are typically part of losing teams.
Miami is on the fence after being Championship Contender
When the Big 3 was formed in Miami, they immediately became NBA championship material. With the departure LeBron, Chris Bosh is having flashbacks to his days in Toronto. Bosh spent his first seven seasons usually battling to make the playoffs as a member of the Raptors, said “it’s weird being on the fence” but in some ways it’s “more familiar than anything else. I’ve been competing for seventh and eighth (position) longer than I was competing for championships….
At 21-29, coach Erik Spoelstra team now has a 30-year old Bosh, whose lost a step in the quickness department, Dwayne Wade who is 33 and has continual leg issues, which keeps him out of games for expanses of time, along with former stellar contributor Udonis Haslem who misses a lot of playing time.
Sprinkle in other ailments to center Hassan Whiteside and forward Shawne Williams (leads team in 3-pointers made) and it is understandable why the Heat are tied for the final slot in the Eastern Conference with Brooklyn.
Betting Odds and Head to Head
Sportsbooks made Miami a six-point favorite on the overnight line and before the local news came on this morning the Heat were down to -4.5,
with the total rising one point to 184. Currently, sportsbooks like BetOnline are offering the Heat at -5.5.
Miami has won four in a row SU and ATS, including the only prior meeting this season back on Nov. 30, 86-79 and three-point road favorites. In the past two seasons with these teams having far different rosters, they split four contests SU and against the NBA odds in South Beach.
The Knicks final game before the All-Star break will be in Orlando on Wednesday and will resume play on the 20th at home against Miami. New York is unsightly 4-24 and 11-16-1 ATS with one day off, losing by seven points a game.
After this affair, the Heat will pay a visit to see how well former teammate LeBron James and Cleveland are performing on hump day. Miami’s present roster is 3-4 SU and ATS with two days between games.
D-Wade will miss yet another game but Carmelo is expected back. This helps New York and this is reflected in the line adjustment for today. Another positive for the Knicks in a season of few, is the Heat fall into a situation many NBA clubs do when coming back home after a road trip of four our more confrontations.
The Heat is 1-12 ATS the last three seasons after four or more consecutive away outings, winning by only 2.2 points per game. With this NBA pick, I’ll give the nod to the Knicks.
NBA Basketball Free Pick: New York +4.5