For the second time in just a week and a half, NBA betting fans will get a chance to take in a clash between two of the best teams in the league, the Miami Heat and the Oklahoma City Thunder.
The schedule might work out well here for the Thunder. They have been at home over the course of the last few days, taking on the Chicago Bulls and the Memphis Grizzlies. Now, they had a day to prepare for the boys from South Beach, while the Heat had to play last night. The win over the Bulls was a great triumph, and it was the sixth straight SU victory for the team. That being said, off of the big time win and a game before the clash at Miami, the loss to the Grizz seemed to be almost inevitable, as it was the perfect sandwich game. Though the team was beaten, it was the 50th straight game for Oklahoma City in which both Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook scored in double digits, joining Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol as the only duo in the last decade and a half to be able to stake claim to that distinction. It was a poor game for those two, which combined for just 40 points on the night, but it was yet another reminder of just what fantastic scorers both of these superstars can be every single night out there.
Head Coach Erik Spoelstra has been tinkering with his lineup just a bit, trying to shake things up to make sure that the team gets back on track. Last night’s win over the Philadelphia 76ers presented an awfully interesting starting five, which included Ronny Turiaf and Shane Battier. Of course, Dwyane Wade sat out with an ankle injury. He is listed as questionable for this one, but we definitely expect to see him out there when push comes to shove. LeBron James is coming off of just a massive effort in which he scored 41 points and had six boards with four assists. Still, the team has its issues at the moment, as a 3-3 mark in the last six games just isn’t all that special, especially with the 2-4 ATS mark that comes with it. That being said, at least the ‘W’ over the Sixers was another step in the right direction, and it locked up the inevitable spot in the postseason for Miami, something that was never really in doubt, but is always a nice formality to have sewn up with a dozen games left in the campaign.
The Final Word: One could look at this as a matter of payback, or a matter of statement. The Thunder didn’t just beat Miami the first time around. They crushed Miami by 16 points in a game that was never really all that close. The Heat would love to get some revenge for that defeat, but in the end, we think that Oklahoma City has a tremendous statement to make. Winning in South Beach and sweeping this season series would definitely be a notable decree. Take the points.
Oklahoma City Thunder @ Miami Heat Pick: Oklahoma City Thunder +3
is a staff writer living in the Orlando area. He has covered NFL, MLB, college football, CFL, AFL, NBA, college basketball, NASCAR, golf, tennis, and the NHL for a number of various outlets in his career, and he has been published by a number of different media outlets, including the Orlando Sentinel and the Wall Street Journal.