It's a rematch of last season's NBA Finals, only a lot has changed in South Beach. What kind of NBA betting odds can we exploit in tonight's nationally televised battle?
There are a lot of question marks heading into tonight's game, most importantly with regards to who will actually be playing. The Heat are banged up and have been very shorthanded recently, while the Spurs have been known to rest guys in situations that warrant it. Is this evening one of those opportunities?
More will come out later, and the NBA odds could very easily change throughout the day, but for now the Spurs are favored by seven points for tonight's road game in South Beach. The O/U is at 197.5.
First of all, let's run over the extensive injury report for the Heat. Right now, Hassan Whiteside, Chris Andersen, Luol Deng and Michael Beasley are all questionable for tonight's game, while Shabazz Napier is doubtful. We expect to see more updates throughout the day, but that should give you a general idea of how thin Miami could potentially be.
Being short didn't seem to matter against the Pistons the other day, as Dwyane Wade and the Heat held on for a 109-102 home win. He dropped 40 points on 14-of-27 shooting to go with six rebounds, four assists, one steal and just one turnover in an all-around outstanding performance. Udonis Haslem also stepped up in a rare start, logging 18 points and 13 rebounds in 35 minutes of action. As a team, Miami shot 47.6 percent from the field, with James Ennis' 16 points and six rebounds off the bench coming in handy as well.
Haslem figures to remain in the starting lineup with the mounting injuries down in South Beach, while Wade will obviously be tasked with running the show offensively. A little help from Goran Dragic would be nice, though, especially with Deng now banged up too.
San Antonio Spurs
Right now the Spurs occupy the sixth spot in the Western Conference with a 47-26 overall record. They've won three straight games and have gone 13-3 over their last 16 overall, meaning they should be feeling confident in their game ahead of this meeting with Wade and company.
San Antonio just got done wrapping up a highly successful three-game home stand which saw them top Oklahoma City, Dallas and then Memphis, three playoff teams. In Sunday's 103-89 win over the Grizzlies, Kawhi Leonard recorded 25 points and 10 rebounds, while Tony Parker, Tim Duncan, Tiago Splitter and Boris Diaw all hit double figures too. The Spurs were most impressive defensively, however, as they held Memphis to 43.9 percent shooting while also holding a clear advantage (48-34) on the glass.
Regardless of how well San Antonio's been playing, the risk of Gregg Popovich resting players always looms, so make sure you're in tune with the news as we approach tipoff.
This is a game in which you're going to have to be in the loop when it comes to rotation announcements and updates. We are bound to get more information later in the day, which could end up swaying your NBA picks.
However, as things stand right now, we like San Antonio to come in and take care of business. The Spurs may rest some guys, and that wouldn't surprise at all, but they have the depth to fill in the missing pieces and continue to execute as normal, something the Heat simply don't have the luxury of counting on.
Miami has gone just 18-18 at home this season, so we're not too scared off by their "home-court advantage" in this spot, even with the game being televised nationally. Instead, we'll back the much healthier (and in-form) Spurs to get the job done on the road and win by at least seven.
Free NBA Pick: San Antonio Spurs -7 at The Greek