Betseeker’s expert tipsters have you covered for the best NBA tips and predictions for every game of the NBA finals.
Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals tips off today and with Boston coming off a gruelling series with Milwaukee, the smart money is heading in another direction.
Tune in from 10:30am for Boston v Miami on Kayo.
Kyle Lowry has been ruled out for Game 1 of the ECF and Marcus Smart is currently listed as questionable. With the potential of both starting point guards missing, it’s hard to make a case for plenty of points.
Miami and Boston rank 2nd and 3rd respectively in defensive rating this postseason and both teams thrive when it comes to limiting their opposition from beyond the arc. The Celtics and Heat rank No. 3 and No. 4 among playoff teams in opponent three-point percentage.
Miami had success against Atlanta and Philadelphia by slowing the game down and they will do the same here in Game 1 as they look to control the game script on their home floor.
The number looks low at first glance but points should come at an absolute premium when these two defensive juggernauts face off for the first time.
As previously mentioned, Kyle Lowry remains out for this one and that should continue to bode well for Max Strus.
The Celtics are very switchable defensively and that was a major factor in their series victory over Milwaukee but with that tendency to switch will come opportunities for Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo to punish smaller defenders.
What will also come from that will be opportunities for the Heat’s vast array of deadly deep ball shooters to make the Celtics pay when Butler and Adebayo inevitably start to attract more attention.
Strus found his shot in the final two games of Miami’s series with Philadelphia – averaging 19.5 points on 48.5 per cent from the floor. The undrafted forward averaged 21 points in his two meetings with Boston this season and with his minutes likely to remain stable with Lowry still on the sidelines, this value play looks worthy of an investment.
Same Game Multi
Miami H2H / Jayson Tatum Under 27.5 Points / Jaylen Brown 3+ 3PM ($5.00)
I like Boston in this series and would have them as the favourite to be crowned champions when it’s all said and done but this is still a massive let down spot for them.
The Celtics advanced to the ECF on Sunday evening, before flying down to Miami that same night. They’ve had just one day to reset and prepare for a completely different Heat team who will be rested and ready to defend home court.
Tatum has struggled against Miami thus far in his career. He’s scored 28 or more in just five of his 27 meetings with the Heat and PJ Tucker will make him work like Milwaukee often couldn’t.
Miami’s defensive gameplan will likely revolve around limiting Tatum and they will live with someone else having to beat them. Recent history suggests that player will be Jaylen Brown who shot 47.8 per cent from deep against the Heat this season.