NBA Picks: Heat Has All It Needs To Even The Series Against Raptors

Charles Stark

Friday, May 13, 2016 11:43 AM UTC

Friday, May. 13, 2016 11:43 AM UTC

Injuries have plagued the Eastern conference semi finals between Miami and Toronto. The Raptors are up 3-2 going into this contest but NBA odds makers have made the home Heat a small favorite now.

Toronto Raptors vs. Miami Heat
NBA odds makers have come out making Miami a -4 favorite like at Pinnacle -103.  The Heat did not play particularly well in that game five but still kept it reasonably close so for my pick I'm going to take them at home to cover the small number. Expect this group of veterans to take this game back to Toronto.


Toronto Raptors
In game five Toronto shot 42% from the field and 41% from distance with only nine turnovers and DeMar DeRozan going for 34 points. More impressively though than DeRozan was Kyle Lowry who went for 25 points along with six assists and 10 rebounds. Overall Toronto has played solid basketball the last couple games and made the best adjustments after losing Valanciunas  but I expect for Miami to reverse that trend tonight.

For the most part Toronto outplayed Miami in game five and won the battle of several key statistics including turnovers, points in the paint, shot attempts, and overall shooting percentage from the floor. They played really well last time in Miami with a tough overtime loss but this will be a difficult situation for them to come in and play elite basketball when they have the cushion of heading back to Toronto for game seven. Expect the Raptors to keep this game relatively close but for Miami to end up winning by over five points.


Miami Heat
In game five Miami shot just 40% from the floor and only 29% from distance while turning the ball over 15 times. I was a bit surprised they kept this game as close as they did considering how poorly they played for the most part. They did however out rebound Toronto 52-49 but they're shooting from the floor and turnovers proved too costly for them to make up any ground and steal the game. Without Hassan Whiteside they have lost quite a bit defensively but now that they have gone two games without him I expect them to make some good adjustments and focus more on getting stops especially doing a better job against Lowry and DeRozan.

Offensively they have not been a good job in moving the basketball with only 12 assists in that game five but outside of their defense what should concern them is how they have shot from distance the last two games. Although they won game four at home Miami was a miserable 1-15 from beyond the arc and things didn't get much better in game five. On the season they shot 34% from distance at home, not great but much better than how they have been the last couple of games. Expect them to knock down more tonight and have a better overall shooting night while stepping things up defensively with this NBA pick.

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Free NBA Pick: Miami Heat -4 (-108)
Best Line Offered: at BetOnline

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