These two teams will square off for the third time this season. Philadelphia will look for the sweep as they’ve won the first two matchups by a combined 20 points. Both surging groups will be playing for seeding in the postseason, which should make this exciting matchup full of intensity and emotion.
Here’s how sportsbooks have set the opening 76ers-Heat NBA odds.
NBA Odds: 76ers-Heat Odds
Philadelphia 76ers pk (-110)
Miami Heat pk (-110)
Over 218.5 Points (-110)
Under 218.5 Points (-110)
Why The 76ers Could Cover The Spread
The Philadelphia 76ers seem to have a stronghold of the top seed in the Eastern Conference. They currently have a 1.5 game lead over the Brooklyn Nets and have a double-header against the Magic on deck. Even if they lose this matchup, chances are that they’ll win out and host the eighth-seed for a favorable first-round matchup.
Philadelphia is red-hot right now with wins in eight of their last nine games to date. Despite the loss against the Pacers in their last game, the 76ers are still 6-3 ATS in their last nine games as well. At full strength, I would pick this team to beat anyone in the east on any given night. Tonight, the NBA odds have this as a toss-up. With playoff seeding essentially locked up and some injury-prone guys on the roster, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Doc Rivers rest some key guys down the stretch, though.
Why The Heat Could Cover The Spread
The Miami Heat have hit a stride at the perfect time, winning three straight and six of their last seven games coming in. With Boston’s loss on Wednesday night, Miami now knows that they won’t be in the play-in tournament and can solely focus on seeding. They’re currently tied with the Knicks and a half-game behind the Hawks in the middle of the east.
Miami received horrible news yesterday as newly acquired Victor Oladipo will miss the rest of the season. He re-injured his quad and learned recently that the injury will require surgery. It’s unfortunate, to say the least, but Miami is still full of depth and will certainly be able to compete with anyone in the postseason.
The Heat are 5-1 ATS in their last six games and 7-0 straight up in their last seven games against Atlantic Division opponents. It’s one of the major reasons the NBA odds see this game as a coin toss. With Joel Embiid listed as questionable and probably unlikely to suit up, Bam Adebayo will have a clear advantage in the paint. If Jimmy Butler is healthy enough to suit up, the Heat should have a clear path to victory yet again.
Final 76ers-Heat Prediction & Pick
This matchup is difficult to predict with health uncertainties. My advice would be to monitor the line as official health reports come out on both Embiid and Butler. Embiid apparently has a non-COVID-related illness and will likely be sidelined as a precaution. Butler has an eye contusion, which I can’t imagine will keep him out of action. With a healthy Butler, I see the Heat squeaking by with a close victory at home. Miami has been rolling on the offensive end of the floor and we all know what they’re capable of doing on the defensive end.
FINAL PICK: Miami Heat pk (-110)