Philadelphia 76ers vs. Miami Heat Game 1 Pick – NBA May 2, 2022

The Philadelphia 76ers and Miami Heat open their Eastern Conference semifinal matchup at FTX Arena. This series looks like a layup for the Heat if you listen to the oddsmakers and the public.

Joel Embiid’s injury changes the whole dynamic of the series, as what was going to be projected to be close, is projected to be an easy assignment for the Heat. Are the 76ers being disrespected without Embiid in the lineup, though?

Embiid is OUT indefinitely with a concussion. The 76ers finished off the Toronto Raptors in six games, but lost Embiid in the process.

That’s clearly a huge blow for the 76ers, who have had bad luck with Embiid staying healthy. The concussion was a freak thing that isn’t a reflection of him being a glass doll. The 76ers have to pick themselves up and believe that they can win without Embiid.

This is still a good team without Embiid on the floor. Tobias Harris will be asked to do a lot more around the rim, while James Harden may have to go off this entire series. Tyrese Maxey may be the deciding factor for the 76ers, though.

The Heat are coming off a five-game series against the Atlanta Hawks. It didn’t take them long to send the Hawks packing following a 97-94 win in Game 5.

Head below for our free 76ers vs. Heat Game 1 prediction on May 2, 2022.

Philadelphia 76ers vs. Miami Heat Game 1 Live Betting Odds:

The following odds are courtesy of Bovada:
Teams Spread Moneyline Total
Philadelphia 76ers +7.5 (-110) +290 Over 208.5 (-110)
Miami Heat -7.5 (-110) -380 Under 208.5 (-110)
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Team Data Philadelphia 76ers Miami Heat
Overall Record 55-33 57-30
ATS Record 41-45-2 49-37-1
Away/Home Record 29-15 32-12
ATS Away/Home 22-20-2 23-21-0
Points Per Game 109.9 110.0
Points Against Per Game 107.3 105.6
Field Goal % 46.6 46.7
Three Point % 36.4 37.9

76ers vs. Heat Prediction:

The 76ers need their best from James Harden and Tyrese Maxey. My only concern with giving the keys to Harden is that he can get erratic and try to do too much.

With Embiid on the floor, Harden was prevented from freelancing and doing his own thing. Having said that, Maxey should keep Harden honest in this one. He’s the x-factor in this series, and I could see him coming out with a solid performance in Game 1.

Maxey is coming off his best performance in the playoffs, with a 25-point effort on 8-16 shooting. He chipped in with 3 rebounds and 8 assists.

Maxey averaged 17.5 points per game on 48.5% shooting in his second season in the NBA. He helped distribute the ball as well, with 4.3 assists per game. Note that Kyle Lowry will not be around to bother Maxey.

Kyle Lowry is still recovering from a hamstring injury and will not be available in Game 1. He exited the third game against the Hawks and never returned.

Jimmy Butler isn’t at 100% going into Game 1. Butler has a sore knee that he’s been resting. He’s listed as questionable, but will likely give it a go. Tyler Herro and PJ Tucker are also listed as questionable to play.

Philadelphia 76ers vs. Miami Heat Game 1 Betting Trends:


  • 5-0 ATS in their previous five games on a three-day rest or more
  • 7-2 ATS in their previous nine games as an underdog on the road
  • 7-3 ATS in their previous ten games on a Monday
  • 8-3 ATS in their previous 11 games versus a team with a winning percentage better than 60%
  • 5-2 ATS in their previous seven games
  • UNDER is 4-1 in their previous five games


  • 10-2 ATS in their previous 12 playoff games as a betting favorite
  • 5-1 ATS in their previous six games at home
  • 7-2 ATS in their previous nine games versus a team with a winning record
  • 36-16 ATS in their previous 52 games on a three-day rest or more
  • UNDER is 5-0 in their previous five games
  • UNDER is 4-0 in their previous four games at home

The Heat didn’t need Lowry to finish off the Hawks in the previous round. However, this time would be beneficial against Maxey and Harden. Maxey doesn’t get proper recognition, but I think right away in Game 1, he will take some of the sting off losing Embiid. He has averaged 23.7 points a game in games that Embiid hasn’t participated in.

It’s will be tough to win this one straight-up, having to depend on Harris around the rim. However, the 76ers’ backcourt should do enough to keep this one close and within 7 points. The line looks a touch too inflated here in Game 1.


76ers vs. Heat Pick
Kyle E / Author

Kyle is a veteran of TheSportsGeek and has spent nearly a decade providing accurate sports picks and writeups here. He has been a sports handicapper for 10+ years and started sharing his picks and thoughts in 2011 at TheSportsGeek. His expertise spans across multiple sports, including the NFL, NCAAF, MLB, NHL, and horse racing. Prior to writing for TheSportsGeek, Kyle was a fantasy football expert, who ultimately parlayed it into a successful sports betting career. You can find his picks daily only at TheSportsGeek.

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