The Miami Heat have taken a 1-0 lead in their Eastern Conference Finals series with the Boston Celtics, and in many ways, the Celtics contributed to their own downfall. Although the Celtics were bereft of Al Horford and Marcus Smart in Game 1, they had no answer for the Heat and things went awry in the third quarter as they slumped to a 118-107 defeat.
There were a few key takeaways from Game 1 that highlighted the difference between the two sides:
- Jayson Tatum turned the ball over six times in the third quarter, which undid most of his side’s good work in the first two quarters.
- Jimmy Butler made 17 of his 41 points from the free throw line.
- The Heat blitzed the third quarter, outscoring the Celtics 39-14.
The Eastern Conference Finals always throw up some good value lines for those looking to wager with the most reputable online sports betting operators. Ahead of Game 2 this evening, we have handpicked a couple of tips that will spice up your betting slip.
Jimmy Butler to blow things up again
While it is easy to pick holes in the Celtics’ defense and lack of discipline, nothing should be taken away from Butler. Playing almost like a man possessed, Butler produced a virtuoso display as he put up 41 points during his 41 minutes on the floor.
Butler took his game to new heights and he has been the driving force behind the Heat’s success so far this season. Everything goes through him and while he has an able support cast, Butler is the player that the Heat relies on the most. And Butler’s 15th point of the evening brought up a special milestone – 14,000 career points in the NBA. Of course, his 41-point showing against the Celtics was outstanding and he will be instrumental in Game 2. The player prop markets usually offer some value and currently, Butler is trading at -110 with BetMGM to post Over 26.5 points.
Bam Adebayo to provide a helping hand
While Butler will take a lot of the plaudits, Bam Adebayo sparkles on the floor and he helped shift things in the Heat’s favour in Game 1. Whereas the Celtics’ energy snapped, Adebayo helped with the Heat in offense and transitioning play. Adebayo finished the night with 10 points, four rebounds and an assist.
Perhaps he could drain a few more points scoring wise in Game 2, but if you like the look of the Player Assists market, then you can get a price of +105 with SugarHouse to contribute Under 2.5 assists, which could be worth pursuing.
Miami Heat to take control in Game 2
There will of course been a lot of soul searching in the Celtics camp after Game 1, and they can’t afford a capitulation as they did in the third quarter earlier this week. At halftime of Game 1, the Celtics looked to have had the measure of the Heat as they were 62-54 up, and they scored 126.5 points per 100 possessions, and they notched up 42 points in the paint.
Naturally, Butler will be the biggest threat to the Celtics in Game 2 and it’s hard to see how the Heat won’t come out on top again. Whether the Celtics can rectify the issues from Game 1 and turn things around remains to be seen. If you like the Team Props market, you may well be swayed by the winning margin section. If you think the Heat will win by six to 10 points, then BetMGM is displaying odds of +360 which is rather tempting.