Apparently the NBA isn’t content to lend all the attention to the NCAA Tourney this weekend, because at 7pm EST, right as the Duke – Louisville game is winding down the NBA has its two top teams; the best in the East and the best in the West pitted in a fascinating late-season showdown. Is Miami at San Antonio a preview of the NBA Finals? I’m not sure I’m ready to put the Spurs past the Thunder just yet, but you can bet Miami will look at the game as a possible preview – and want to deliver a similar message to the one they gave the Thunder a little over a month ago.
Let’s see if we can continue our winning ways after a nice 3-0 ATS night in the NBA with another winner tonight in the marquee matchup.
Miami Heat at San Antonio Spurs -1.5
With the exception of the visiting Heat and the Nuggets, there is no better team at home than the San Antonio Spurs. Their 32-4 record is fantastic, and despite the fact they’ve lost three in a row against Miami, all three of those games were in Miami (and one of them was without all five starters, thank-you-very-much Greg Popvitch!) At just one and a half point favorites, there seems to be some some good value in the Spurs tonight.
I’d like Miami much more if the streak was still intact. With this week’s loss to the Bulls, this could become just another game, and a game they are supposed to lose. Of course, there is that tightly contested race for the best record in the NBA, but both teams and both coaches have shown a slight ambivalence to that aim in years past, preferring instead to rest stars and get healthy for the “second season.”
The Heat’s key players haven’t had a ton of success in San Antonio. Lebron is just 3-7 during his career and Bosh is 1-7. Together as a “Big Three” they and Wade have yet to win in San Antonio. However, tonight the Heat are at full strength, while the Spurs will be missing Manu Ginobili. That is a nice edge for the Heat who will have one less offensive threat to be concerned about.
It is generally poor practice to bet against the Spurs at home, but there is just something about these Heat in “message” games the last few months. They’ve delivered in Oklahoma City, they’ve delivere in New York and Boston, and I’m going to bank of them getting it done tonight in San Antonio, especially without Ginobili.
Enjoy the game – it should be a great one. I’m taking the Heat in an impactful road victory.
Free Pick: Miami Heat +1.5