NBA Pick: NBA Playoff Play of the Day Thursday

LT Profits Sports Group

Thursday, June 12, 2014 4:00 AM GMT

Thursday, Jun. 12, 2014 4:00 AM GMT

Every day during the NBA Playoffs, LT Profits Sports seeks that one single playoff play that has the best chance of cashing. Here is their Playoff Play of the Day Thursday.

The team that already has the two best shooting quarters in NBA Playoff history during these NBA Finals looks like an appealing underdog Thursday night when those San Antonio Spurs (76-27, 34-16 away) again pay a visit to the Miami Heat (67-33, 40-10 home) for Game 4 from American Airlines Arena in Miami, FL at 9:05 ET in a game televised nationally on ABC with the Spurs now leading the series 2-1.

The point spread at Pinnacle Sports has San Antonio as a road underdog for this contest with the current line at +5½ with odds of -110.

The story of the first three games of this series has been the historic shooting performances by the Spurs in their two wins. San Antonio pulled away to a 110-95 win in Game 1 by setting an NBA Playoff record for shooting percentage in a quarter, going 14-for-16, 87.5 percent in the fourth quarter. They then nearly matched that in the first quarter of Game 3, shooting the second highest percentage for a quarter ever at 13-for-15, 86.7 percent while scoring 41 points.

That eventually propelled the Spurs to set another record as they set an all-time NBA Playoff high for shooting percentage in a half, finishing 25-for-33, 75.8 percent in the first half while piling up 71 points before virtually cruising to a 111-92 victory! In reality, the Heat have really shut the Spurs down in only one critical quarter during this series, which was in the fourth quarter of Game 2 when San Antonio went just 6-for-17, allowing Miami to steal a 98-96 road win.

Now, we think it is pretty obvious that the Heat will come out much more focused defensively for Game 4, and do not forget that Miami is now 15-5 straight up in their last 20 games coming off of a playoff loss including winning the last seven in a row in that situation with the most recent being Game 2 of this series.

However, we think that this is the first time since LeBron James arrived at South Beach that the Heat do not have the better team in this series. So while Miami will almost undoubtedly put forth its best performance of this series from start to finish tonight, will that be enough to emerge triumphant and even up the series?

Well, maybe or maybe not, as we do not see the Spurs letting up either despite getting home court advantage in this series back with Tuesday’s win, as now they would rather not allow a great team like Miami to get any momentum. And when both of these teams play at their best, we simply feel that the Spurs are the better team this year.

These teams finished one-two in shooting percentage during the regular season with Miami leading the league and the Spurs ranking second, and the two clubs have the exact same rankings in that category during these playoffs, but the Heat have had the harder time slowing down the Spurs and their preferred frantic pace than the Spurs have head stopping the Heat so far.

No, we do not expect any 80-percent shooting quarters or 70-percent shooting halves from San Antonio tonight with the Heat expected to play much tighter defense, but we have seen enough from the Spurs that they are capable of winning this game with even a “normal” shooting performance as there does not seem to be much Miami can do to slow down the Spurs’ pace.

Now, while we feel that the Spurs are the better team this season, it is entirely possible that the Heat could bring this series to 2-2 by eking out a home win. However, we are looking for a tight contest from start to finish with this outcome still undecided until that last few possessions.

And with that in mind and with this point spread currently one full point higher than it was for Game 3, we recommend taking the points with San Antonio in Game 4 from Miami on Thursday.

[gameodds]5/295578/?r-1=238-92-43-349-192/us[/gameodds]

NBA Pick: Spurs +5½ (-110)

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