A night after the Los Angeles Lakers were swept out of the Western Conference Finals by the Denver Nuggets, the Boston Celtics avoided the same fate. Looking to become the second-ever 8-seed to advance to the NBA Finals, the Miami Heat fell victim to a second-half surge by the Celtics, who are now 3-0 in elimination games this NBA playoffs. How does that affect the Heat vs. Celtics odds for Game 5?
It was an impressive bounce-back for Boston, who looked dead in the water after falling behind by 30 in a lopsided Game 3 loss. Trailing by six at halftime, the Celtics outscored Miami 38-23 in the third quarter in Tuesday’s Game 4. Miami also couldn’t keep their hot shooting pace going. It resulted in a 116-99 loss, snapping the Heat’s six-game winning streak at Kaseya Center. Now, the series returns to Boston for Game 5. On the surface, that seems like good news for the Celtics. However, the C’s are just 4-5 at TD Garden this postseason. Who has the edge? We have a look at Heat vs. Celtics odds in our preview of Game 5.
Round: Eastern Conference Finals
Date: Thursday, May 25, 2023
Time: 8:30 p.m. on TNT
Location: TD Garden (Boston, Massachussetts)
Heat vs. Celtics Game 5 Best Odds
Miami Heat (44-38)
It’s only natural to wonder if the pressure shifts onto the backs of the Heat after failing to get the job done on their home floor and hand any possible momentum to Boston. Jimmy Butler, for one, is not worried.
Frankly, the Heat have a right to be confident. They are 2-0 at the TD Garden in this series and were 2-1 in Boston during last year’s Eastern Conference Finals. Dating back to that series, Miami has won seven of their last 11 road playoff games.
Miami’s offensive production dipped, especially from beyond the arc. The Heat shot 25% from 3-point range in Game 4. That brought their production from long distance for the series to 42%. That shows you how hot of a shooting run they were on in the first three games. Getting that back will be a key for Miami.
Many Celtics fans believe that Jayson Tatum should play every game thinking it’s an elimination game. Coming off a 51-point performance in Game 7 against Philadelphia the last time Boston’s season was on the line, Tatum scored a game-high 33 points and grabbed 10 rebounds in the win.
The obvious key to the Celtics’ win in Game 4 was their 18-0 run in the third quarter. Their defense, however, returning to regular season form was a big factor. Boston allowed 110 points per game in the regular season, which was good enough for second in the NBA. In the playoffs, however, their defensive rating of 113 is 10th among the 16 playoff squads. The Heat were not a high-scoring team during the regular season and are still without third-leading scorer Tyler Herro. Boston will need to keep up the pressure on defense to extend this series.
Heat vs. Celtics Game 5 Odds & Our Prediction
Bookmakers have set the Heat vs. Celtics Game 5 odds in favor of Boston by 8.5 points. This line flies in the face of most of what we’ve seen with our own two eyes in this series. There’s no sign that the Heat will be intimidated or too big for the moment. While that doesn’t guarantee the Heat will win, we do like the wiggle room that a bet on Miami provides.
In addition, over the total of 215.5 (available at BetRivers) is a strong play. The first three games went over that number, and Game 4 missed it by .5 point. And that’s with Miami shooting just 25% from 3-point range.