Let’s take a closer look at the NBA odds for Game 2 of this Eastern Conference semifinal series at AmericanAirlines Arena, with the opening tip scheduled for 7:00 p.m. ET.
Chicago opened up this best-of-seven series with a 93-86 victory over Miami as 12.5-point road underdogs Monday night, while going UNDER the betting total of 188.
The Bulls are 6-11 straight up (SU) and against the spread (ATS) off an upset win as an underdog since the start of the 2012-13 campaign, while the UNDER is 10-7 in that situation.
Miami hadn’t played in eight days when taking the court in Game 1, as it was coming off a four-game sweep of the Milwaukee Bucks in the quarterfinals, which likely played a big part in the Big Three struggling on the offensive end.
Chris Bosh, LeBron James and Dwyane Wade combined to shoot 18 of 43 from the field, while the defense allowed the Bulls to score 35 points in the final quarter—matching the most points they’ve allowed in the final 12 minutes all season.
Could get out of hand
NBA handicappers are likely going to load up on backing the Heat on the money line when looking over the betting lines, especially since the Bulls are 6-21 in Game 2’s on the road in the postseason.
Forward Jimmy Butler is likely to get another start as Luol Deng (illness) isn’t expected to return to the floor until Game 3, which has seen him play all 48 minutes in three consecutive games.
He’s going to have a hard time keeping up with James on the defensive end, who earned NBA MVP honors for the fourth time in five years earlier in the week.
Opening up with a loss
The Heat are 2-0 ATS during the Big Three era in Game 2 when opening up a playoff series with a loss—covering those games by an average of 11.0 points.
James has combined for 61 points, 18 rebounds and 10 assists in those contests, which makes him playable in all player props in the betting market Wednesday night.
I’m going to recommend that readers back the Heat as one of their NBA picks, as they’ve covered the number in seven of eight opportunities when proving victorious in the playoffs following a loss.
NBA Pick: Miami Heat -12.5 at Bet365