The Golden State Warriors (3-4) travel to the opposite coast to play the Miami Heat (2-5) on Tuesday. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:30 pm ET. Below we continue our NBA odds series with a Warriors-Heat prediction and pick.
Golden State is 3-4 coming off of a two-game losing streak. The Warriors are just 2-5 against the spread (ATS) after they covered 54% of games last season. Six of Golden State's seven games have gone over – a flip from last year's 46% over rate.
Miami is just 2-5 after consecutive losses to Golden State and Sacramento. The Heat are a paltry 1-6 ATS despite covering 57% of games last season. Four of Miami's seven games have gone over – a trend on track with last year's 55% over rate.
The Warriors took the most recent matchup earlier this season in Golden State by 13 points. They also took games last season by seven and 14 points. Two of the last three matchups between the two teams went under tonight's 226.5-point total.
Here are the Warriors-Heat NBA odds, courtesy of FanDuel
NBA Odds: Warriors-Heat Odds
Golden State Warriors: +1 (-110)
Miami Heat: -1 (-110)
Over: 226.5 (-110)
Under: 226.5 (-110)
Why The Warriors Could Cover The Spread
Golden State has had a rough start to its title defense campaign. The Warriors have struggled against top-flight Western Conference teams but did handle Miami last week by 13. Golden State has been the ultimate boom-bust team – ranking first in scoring but dead last in points allowed.
The Warriors have proven the ability to cover this spread against Miami – having done so in both matchups last year and again last week. Golden State received a typical stellar performance from star Steph Curry in the win. Curry scored 33 points, dished out nine assists, and corralled seven rebounds while shooting 7-14 from three in the victory. He's been Golden State's most consistent player all season – leading the team in scoring and rebounding while placing second on the team in assists. He projects favorably against Miami's weak defensive backcourt and his mere presence alone is something to keep in mind when making a Warriors-Heat prediction.
If Golden State is going to cover, they're going to need to rebound as proficiently as in their last matchup with Miami. The Warriors dominated the glass, out-rebounding the Heat 50-31. Six different Warriors corralled at least five rebounds – with four starters amassing at least seven. Miami and Golden State both rank near the bottom of the NBA in rebounding differential. If the Warriors can match their 16 offensive rebounds from the previous meeting they should be able to overcome their horrendous defense.
Why The Heat Could Cover The Spread
Miami has been one of the most disappointing teams to start the season. Last year's top seed in the Eastern Conference has been solid defensively (11th in points allowed) but is near the bottom of the league in scoring. They've taken care of the ball (eighth in turnovers) but have been out-rebounded by a significant margin (25th in rebounding differential).
If the Heat are going to cover and defend their home floor, they're going to need more out of their backcourt. Starting guards Kyle Lowry and Tyler Herro combined to score just 19 points in their loss to Golden State last week. The two shot a combined 7-22 from the floor and a paltry 3-13 from three. Herro surely won't shoot as poorly given his overall numbers but there is some room for concern regarding Lowry. While Herro has averaged 20 PPG on 47-38-86 shooting, Lowry has really struggled to start the year. The thirty-six-year-old has averaged just 12 PPG this season on a disappointing 35% shooting percentage. Golden State's defense is exploitable, especially for opposing guards. If Miami has any hope of righting the ship, it'll come on the back of their two lead guards.
If there's an X-factor for the Heat, it has to be center Bam Adebayo. Bam has put together a strong start to the season. He comes into tonight averaging 17 points and eight rebounds but was especially effective in these teams' last matchup. Bam scored 26 points in the loss – marking the third time he's scored at least 24 points against Golden State in their last four matchups. Bam is a matchup nightmare for any opposing team given his skill and size. He'll surely be a strong option against a Warriors team that just gave up 24 points to Piston's center Isiah Stewert.
Final Warriors-Heat Prediction & Pick
Neither Golden State nor Miami has fared well this season but something has to give tonight. It's essentially a pick 'em which bodes well for a Warriors team that's won four of the last five matchups between the two.
Final Warriors-Heat Prediction & Pick: Golden State Warriors +1 (-110)