Matchup: Miami Heat vs. Chicago Bulls
Date/Time: Friday, May 10, 8 p.m. (ET)
NBA Betting Odds: VietBet
Pointspread: Miami -7
Total Line: 187.5
The defending champions dominated the regular season with the best record in the NBA and rolled over Milwaukee in four games in the opening round of the playoffs, so nobody was more stunned than the Heat themselves when they dropped Game 1 of this series 93-86 as 12.5-point favorites at home. After admitting it lacked the intensity that this team has played with all year long, Miami quickly returned to form in Wednesday night’s Game 2 with one of the most lopsided victories in the history of the NBA playoffs.
It had the game well in hand at the half with a 55-41 lead, but LeBron James and Co. quickly took things to a whole other level in the third quarter on its way to a 115-78 romp as a 13-point favorite at home. The total stayed UNDER in Game 1 but went OVER the 185.5-point line on Wednesday night. The Heat shot 60 percent from the field and dominated the boards by outrebounding the Bulls 41-28.
Chicago limped into this series after ousting Brooklyn in seven games in its opener with starters Kirk Hinrich and Luol Deng out of the lineup. Despite the absence of these two players in Game 1, the Bulls still found a way to pull off the biggest upset of the playoffs so far. Nate Robinson rose to the occasion with 27 points and Jimmy Butler came up big as well with 21 points and 14 rebounds while keeping James in check on the other end of the court. Give this team all the credit in the world, but it pulled off this feat while Miami ran around the floor with one eye shut.
The Bulls are hoping to get Deng back for Friday night and rumors are flying around that Derrick Rose may try and give it go. The reality is that no matter who is on the floor for Chicago in Game 3 it will be a tall task to keep this game close now that it has gotten Miami’s full attention for this series. Chicago will also have to do a much better job at keeping its composure on Friday night than it did in Game 2 or this game will quickly get out of hand as well.
Free NBA Pick
You have to believe that Game 1 was an anomaly and Wednesday night’s result properly reflected the gap in talent between these two teams. Do not look for another 37-point blowout in Game 3, but the Heat will not allow Chicago to keep this game closer than seven points either.
Miami 98 Chicago 89
DJ is a freelance writer that concentrates on his true passion in life; the world of sports. He produces a number of articles each week for BangTheBook.com as well as a select group of other websites that specialize in providing the most up-to-date information for the sports gaming industry. His goal is to write insightful articles on a wide variety of sporting topics that can provide an edge to today's sophisticated online player.