A supreme NBA matchup is scheduled for this evening as the Miami Heat travel north to Orlando to take on the Magic. Join us for our NBA odds series, where our Heat-Magic prediction and pick will be made.
Fresh off of a narrow win over the Houston Rockets by a score of 97-95, the Heat have now won back-to-back games and are still holding on to the top spot in the Southwest Division with a 31-25 overall record.
As for the Magic, Orlando was able to secure one of the more impressive wins of the season as they overwhelmed the Denver Nuggets with their young and talented roster en route to a 115-104 victory in front of their home fans. With a record of 23-33, the Magic need more wins like their most recent one if they are gonna make a run at a playoff spot by the end of the season.
Here are the Heat-Magic NBA odds, courtesy of FanDuel
NBA Odds: Heat-Magic Odds
Miami Heat: -1.5 (-110)
Orlando Magic: +1.5 (-110)
Over: 213.5 (-110)
Under: 213.5 (-110)
How To Watch Heat vs. Magic
TV: Bally Sports Florida/Bally Sports Sun
Stream: NBA League Pass
Time: 7:00 ET/4:00 PT
*Watch NBA games LIVE with fuboTV (click for a free trial)*
Why The Heat Could Cover The Spread
For starters, the biggest component for the Heat’s success this season has no doubt been playing within the State of Florida. In fact, Miami has won nine straight inside their home state and will look to extend that streak despite possessing a 12-16 record on the road.
In order for the Heat to cover the spread against an up-and-coming Orlando squad, they will need to figure out a way to deal with the Magic’s effectiveness on the glass. On paper, the Heat have been a bottom-five rebounding team all season long as the Magic certainly put on a show when it came to garnering extra possessions offensively versus the Nuggets. Simply put, once Miami forces a miss defensively, they cannot afford to give up loose balls and give Orlando more opportunities to score if they want to cover. Not to mention, but the Heat have been pretty horrendous when attempting to cover the spread this season as they are a combined 21-33 ATS up to this point.
Nevertheless, if there is anything that the Heat excel at, it is the fact that they will possess the best player on the floor along with boasting a defensive unit that remains as one of the best throughout the league. At first glance, Jimmy Butler is averaging 21.9 PPG this season and should be expected to bounce back in a big way after dropping only 16 points on the lowly Rockets as Miami was able to escape the claws of defeat. In addition to Butler’s play, Miami is surrendering the second-fewest points per game at 108.2 PPG as they often make life uncomfortable for whoever they guard. If the Heat can force some turnovers out of the youthful Magic, then covering the spread could soon become a reality.
Why The Magic Could Cover The Spread
There is a reason why the Magic are considered one of the more promising teams in recent memory, as Orlando strives themselves on playing extremely hard and also depends on their extreme athleticism to get the job done.
In their big-time triumph over Denver on Thursday, the Magic out-worked the Nuggets to a 47-39 advantage in the rebounding department while also forcing 16 turnovers defensively. Even more impressive, the Magic got off to a dreadful start as they fell behind injury the early going by a score of 12-0 before they dominated the rest of the way against the top-seed out west.
So far, the Magic went down in defeat in their only matchup with the Heat this season coming on Jan. 27th, and they will certainly attempt to play a cleaner brand of basketball this time around. Alas, Orlando committed a whopping 20 turnovers which eventually turned out to be their downfall once the clock hit triple zeroes. Regardless, if the Magic can avoid hurting themselves in this category, they should be able to attack Miami in the paint at will. Remaining aggressive on their dribble drives to the rim will be one of the main priorities in finding success in this one as the Magic are averaging just north of 25 trips to the charity stripe per game this season. By getting Miami in foul trouble from the opening jump, Orlando can truly take control of this divisional contest.
Final Heat-Magic Prediction & Pick
The biggest difference-maker to keep an eye out for will prove to be guard Cole Anthony off the bench, as he serves as a spark plug for an Orlando squad that is deeper than one would thing. Especially with being at home, expect the Magic to get their revenge after falling short to the Heat only a few short weeks ago.
Final Heat-Magic Prediction & Pick: Magic +1.5 (-110)