Heat to Stay Hot as they Face the Pelicans Tonight

Miami Heat player in action

Charles Stark

Wednesday, March 15, 2017 1:33 PM GMT

Wednesday, Mar. 15, 2017 1:33 PM GMT

The Miami Heat has been one of the hottest teams in the NBA over the past few months. Today they have been made a solid home favorite against the New Orleans Pelicans. Can Miami continue to stay hot?

New Orleans Pelicans

New Orleans has struggled a little bit more than most people probably anticipated when they acquired  DeMarcus Cousins. As of writing this article they are 3-6 coming out of the break and seem to have no identity with this new mix of players. Last season New Orleans was a really up-tempo offensively orientated team, but this year they have relied more on their defense. Currently, they are averaging just 102.9 points per game and rank 26th and 27th in effective field-goal percentage and shooting efficiency respectively. 

They simply have not been very good at putting the ball in the basket and rank 21st in the in field goals made per game. As mentioned, defensively they have been better and they do rank fifth in opponent effective field-goal percentage and opponent shooting efficiency. Despite those decent defensive statistics right now it seems to me they lack some consistency, and I think it’ll take another few weeks for them to get into a rhythm.

 

Miami Heat

Miami looks to bounce back from a loss at Indiana the other night but since the All-Star break they are a solid 7-3 and seem to be the dark horse in the race for the Eastern conference championship. They still have a lot of ground to make up as they are still below .500 on the season, but they have been tremendous over the past couple of months. 

As usual, they are getting it done on the defensive side of the ball ranking in the top five in the league in most defensive categories highlighted by allowing opponents to shoot just 48.4% on their two point shots which rank third in the NBA. This will likely be the point of contention tonight against a New Orleans team, and their new look, that relies heavily on scoring from the interior extended. Offensively Miami has been less than stellar but they do shoot the ball well from distance at 36.5%, and with them being at home tonight along with the situation I like for them to cover the number.

 

New Orleans Pelicans vs Miami Heat  

Oddsmakers have made Miami a -6 favorite and for my NBA pick, I will back them in this spot. This will be a tough night for New Orleans to put the ball in the basket and I expect the Heat to roll to yet another win.

 Free NBA Pick: Miami -6Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes

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