Boston Celtics vs. Miami Heat Predictions, Picks, Odds

The Eastern Conference Finals will resume on Thursday night with a heavyweight Game 2 clash between the Boston Celtics and Miami Heat. Coverage begins from FTX Arena in Miami at 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN.

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Score Prediction

Heat 102, Celtics 98

Best Bets

Under 207.5 (-110) at BetMGM

Boston Celtics vs. Miami Heat Predictions

After finishing seventh in the East with a record of 36-36 SU last year, Boston initially sustained that same underwhelming pace with another mediocre start to this season, as the Celtics opened with a frustrating 15-20 SU and ATS skid, with ten of those SU losses coming by 10+ PTS.

However, Boston has dominated defensively since mid-January, considering the Celtics are allowing just 103.5 DPPG across their latest 44-15 SU run, which includes an average of 109 DPPG during a four-game sweep of Brooklyn in the first round, and 97.7.5 DPPG to Milwaukee in the Eastern Conference Semis.

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On the other hand, Miami dominated to open the season, as the Heat kicked things off with a sturdy 11-5 SU and 12-4 ATS stretch, with nine of those SU victories coming by 10+ PTS.

Aside from a brief nine-game skid in December (3-6 SU, 2-7 ATS), Miami has carried that same momentum all the way through the early stages of the postseason, considering the Heat enter Game 2 riding an impressive 47-21 SU and 39-28-1 ATS stretch, while ranking third in defensive efficiency and ninth in offensive efficiency during that timeframe (1.101 OE, 1.050 DE).

I’ll take the under here, as Game 1 between these teams cruised over the total thanks to Miami and Boston both shooting 32+ free throws throughout Tuesday’s affair (118-107, O 204), which is well beyond league average this postseason (22.9 FTA); and while Game 2 should ultimately breed a similar level of physicality, I expect to see the scoring numbers decline in a series between squads that have both surrendered less than 102 PPG since the start of the playoffs (MIA – 98.3 DPPG, BOS – 101.9 DPPG).

Boston Celtics vs. Miami Heat Betting Odds

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Boston Celtics vs. Miami Heat Betting Resources

Boston Celtics Betting Analysis

  • SU: 59-35
  • ATS: 52-40-2
  • O/U: 45-47-2

After last year’s underwhelming 36-36 SU showing, Boston stumbled out a similarly mediocre start to this season, as the Celtics opened with a frustrating 15-20 SU skid, despite getting tagged as favorites in 22 of those contests.

However, Boston has arguably been the hottest team in basketball since the midway point of the season, considering the Celtics enter Thursday’s contest riding an impressive 44-15 SU stretch, while scoring 114+ PTS in 29 of those contests (112.8 OPPG) and allowing 100 PTS or less in 24 of them (102.9 DPPG).

Miami Heat Betting Analysis

  • SU: 62-32
  • ATS: 54-39-1
  • O/U: 52-42

After last year’s underwhelming sixth-place finish (40-32 SU), the Heat made some bold offseason acquisitions to better suit needs at the offensive end, primarily highlighted by the acquisition of six-time All-Star Kyle Lowry; and everything worked perfectly to start, as Miami kicked off the season with an impressive 11-5 SU and 12-4 ATS stretch, with all but two of those SU victories coming by double-digits.

However, the depth Miami sacrificed was briefly exposed towards the midway point of the season, as a revolving door of health issues spiraled the Heat into a brief 3-6 SU and 2-7 ATS skid in December.

Depth hasn’t been much of a concern recently though, considering the Heat boast SU victories in 47 of their last 68 contests, which includes sturdy postseason records of 9-3 SU and 8-4 ATS, despite Lowry missing over half of those contests (7).

Boston Celtics vs. Miami Heat Head-to-Head

Miami won two-of-three regular-season matchups against Boston last year, with both Heat’ victories soaring over the total at an average of 252 OPPG, while the Celtics’ lone win stayed under with a score of 107-105 (U 217).

However, the Celtics went 3-0 SU against Miami this season, with their first and third matchups staying well under the total at an average of 188.5 PPG, while the second went over with a score of 122-92 (O 210).

Game 1 of this series belonged to Miami though, as the Heat ran away with a double-digit home victory after outscoring Boston 39-14 in the third quarter of Tuesday’s series-opener (118-107, O 204).

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Key Players to Watch

  • BOS: Jayson Tatum - SF (26.9 PPG, 8 REB, 4.4 AST)
  • BOS: Jaylen Brown - SG (23.6 PPG, 6.1 REB, 3.5 AST)
  • MIA: Jimmy Butler - SF (21.4 PPG, 5.9 REB, 5.5 AST)
  • MIA: Tyler Herro - SG (20.7 PPG, 5 REB, 4 AST)

Boston Celtics vs. Miami Heat Betting Conclusion

After taking a 1-0 series lead with an imposing home victory in Tuesday’s series-opener (W, 118-107), the Heat enter Game 2 as four-point home favorites over the Celtics at FTX Arena, which is roughly the same number Miami was favored by in Game 1 of this series (MIA -4.5).

I’ll take the under here, as Tuesday’s series-opener easily cleared the total with a score of 118-107 (O 204); however, 54 PTS came from the charity stripe on 66 FTA in that contest, which probably won’t get replicated throughout a series between a pair of squads allowing roughly 18 PPG apiece from the foul line this postseason.

Boston Celtics vs. Miami Heat Betting Trends

  • The Celtics are 12-4 ATS in their last 16 games.
  • The Heat are 14-5 ATS in their last 19 games.
  • The total has gone UNDER in nine of the last 12 Heat' games.
  • The Celtics are 9-1 ATS in their last ten road games.
  • The Celtics are 13-7 ATS in their last 20 road games against Miami.
  • The Heat are 4-2 ATS in their last six matchups against Boston.
  • The total has gone OVER in eight of the last 11 matchups between Miami and Boston.
  • The Heat are 10-0 SU in their last ten home games.