NBA Picks: Heat vs. Spurs in Game 4 of NBA Finals

Jeff Grant

Wednesday, June 12, 2013 2:07 PM GMT

The Miami Heat have won all five of their games following a loss during the postseason, but will that be the case in Game 4 as they prepare to continue their best-of-seven series against the San Antonio Spurs Thursday night?


Let’s take a closer look at the NBA odds for Game 4 of the 2013 NBA Finals at the AT&T Center, with the opening tip scheduled for 9:00 p.m. ET on ABC.

Alternating pattern 

Miami has alternated wins and losses over its last 10 games, as it looks to bounce back from a 113-77 blowout defeat to San Antonio as +2 road underdogs in Game 3 Tuesday, while going OVER the total for the first time in six contests.

The Heat are 18-6 against the spread (ATS) in their last 24 games following a straight-up (SU) loss, while the UNDER is on a 7-3 run in that situation. 

Bombs away 

San Antonio owns a 2-1 series advantage after hitting a NBA Finals record 16 3-pointers last time out, with Danny Green and Gary Neal going a combined 13 for 19 from beyond the arc. 

The Spurs are 26-11 SU and 24-12-1 ATS after scoring 105 or more points since the start of the regular season, with the UNDER going 23-14 in that situation. 

King James vanished 

Four-time NBA MVP LeBron James finished with a minus-32 point differential while on the floor in Game 3, which happens to be his worst performance in that category in this career. 

The Heat need him to be more aggressive on the offensive end, considering he didn’t attempt a free throw in a game for the first time since 2009 (2007 playoffs).

The other Big Three 

Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker are just two wins away from delivering San Antonio its fifth NBA title, but handicappers need to keep a close eye on an injury that occurred in the third quarter Tuesday.

Parker will have an MRI performed on his right hamstring Wednesday, which could hinder his performance the rest of the way. The point guard demonstrated in Game 1 that he needs to be on the floor during crunch time with his late-game heroics. 

Dangerous underdog 

The Heat are dangerous road underdogs due to their perfect 5-0 record following a SU loss during the 2013 NBA playoffs, outscoring opponents by an average of 21.6 points per game in that situation. 

Miami has also totaled 15 playoff road wins since 2011, which is the most in the league in that span.

[gameodds]5/238034/43/us[/gameodds]

Prediction 

I’m going to recommend that readers back the Heat in the first half as their NBA picks Thursday, as James will try to establish himself in the lane early, while shooting guard Dwyane Wade has performed well in the opening 24 minutes in this series. 

NBA Pick: Miami Heat +.5 First Half