NBA Picks for Heat vs. Pistons: Wade's Absence Weakens Miami's Offense, Giving Detroit the Advantage

Steven Suarez

Tuesday, February 3, 2015 3:24 PM GMT

Both of these Eastern Conference teams have struggled this season, yet both still have plenty to play for in the watered down conference. Check out who we think offers the best NBA betting value for tonight.

Odds Overview
Right now, the Pistons are favored by four points on our NBA odds. They just earned a nice home victory over Houston over the weekend and will be clamoring to get back on the court and do the same to the Heat tonight.

The O/U is extremely low at 185, which suggests we'll see a very slow tempo to this contest. We wouldn't go anywhere near a total play for this game.

 

Detroit Pistons
Following a four-game losing streak, the Pistons were in dire need of a win, and they were able to get back on track with Saturday's win over the Rockets. In what was Josh Smith's return to Detroit, the Pistons got the job done offensively, hitting an even 50.0 percent from the floor overall and 40.0 percent from three.

Individually, D.J. Augustin scored 28 points to go with 12 assists, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope exploded for 28 points on 10-of-21 shooting with five rebounds and four assists, and both Andre Drummond and Greg Monroe posted double-doubles. When the entire offense is clicking, the Pistons have shown they can hang with just about anybody.

Since Smith has left town, there's no doubt Detroit has been a better team, in spite of some poor recent play. Drummond and Monroe have been utterly dominant at times, and Augustin has filled in for the injured Brandon Jennings nicely. If KCP can keep progressing and turn into a consistent option at the two, this Pistons team could make their way up the standings. There's certainly enough time for them to gain some ground in the weak East.

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Miami Heat
Most figured the Heat wouldn't be nearly as good without LeBron James in the mix, and that notion has been proven true this season. Miami has dealt with numerous injuries already this season, and that's played a big part in the team's forgettable 21-26 start. We know this Heat team is talented enough to make a push for a high seed in the Eastern Conference. Despite being five games under .500, they're still in the seventh spot, for crying out loud.

The question simply comes down to health. Dwyane Wade has had to sit out quite a few games already this season. When he's been active and feeling good, the Heat have been a completely different team, so we imagine coach Erik Spoelstra is counting down the days until he has a full-strength rotation to count on. Luol Deng has also been banged up as of late.

The Heat come into tonight having lost two of three, though they did earn a road win over Boston this past Sunday. Hassan Whiteside made his presence felt once again, piling up 20 points and nine rebounds en route to Miami's 83-75 victory. The Heat remain on the road for Tuesday night's tilt, and they've actually had a better record away from (13-11) than they have in South Beach (8-15).

 

NBA Pick
Over the years, we've been very wary when it comes to backing the Pistons. They're a tough team to trust with our NBA Picks overall.

Tonight though, we think this sets up as a nice spot for Detroit to log a second straight victory. The Heat are without Wade, so their already anemic offense has been even more shaky of late. The emergence of Whiteside has been much needed, and Bosh is playing too, but Miami really needs Wade back and at full strength for them to be taken seriously.

Bosh and Whiteside will try to hold their own against Drummond and Monroe, but we have a hard time seeing Miami win this game out on the road without their best playmaker. With our sports picks for Tuesday night, let's roll with the Pistons to win by at least five points. 

NBA Pick: Detroit Pistons -4 at 5Dimes