Eastern Conference Playoffs Game 5 Betting Preview: Miami Heat vs. Philadelphia 76ers – April 24, 2018
Matchup at a Glance
Where: Wells Fargo Arena; Philadelphia, PA
Date + Time (ET): TUES Apr. 24 @ 8:00 PM ET
Moneyline: MIA +500, PHI -600
Over/Under Total: 211
Quick Pick: MIA +500
A series that seemed relatively close after Miami won a close game 2, has changed rather rapidly. The up-and-coming 76ers took both games on the Heat’s home floor to take a commanding 2-1 series lead. Miami is listed as +500 favorites in most sportsbooks today if you are looking to bet on them.
It would be hard to call Miami’s season a failure no matter the outcome, but after bringing Dwyane Wade back home, the team definitely envisioned him helping them to more than one single playoff win.
Miami Heat (Down 3-1)
The Heat flat out struggled throughout all of game 4. The poor fourth quarter they played in game 3 quite clearly carried over and it was apparent that they were not playing like themselves. They failed to stop Philly’s attack and three-point barrage, something which they look to put on every team in the league.
In order to win game 5, Miami is going to need to follow the recipe from game 2. Play smaller (even if Embiid is in), move the ball, and most importantly, get a ton of looks for D-Wade. He hit each of his first 8 shots in game 2, and showed to be unstoppable. It is very surprising Miami has stuck with Hassan Whiteside through his great struggles, but if he is going to start, well, it is time to start producing.
Philadelphia 76ers (Up 3-1)
Philly is just letting the good times roll. After four horrific seasons in a row, Brett Brown has taken them back to the promised land. Playoff basketball in Philly has always proved to garner large, electrifying crowds. Wells Fargo Center has been a tough place to teams to come in and win games through the year. Lead by their rookie PG Ben Simmons and also Dario Saric, they have taken a 3-1 lead and are within a game of their first playoff series win since 2011.
In order to win game 5 and send the Heat home for the summer, they have to come out aggressively and play their style. Joel Embiid’s shot has not been dropping, but they need to continue to look for him in the post and play through that. Ben Simmons will need to aggressively attack the basket and then kick it out to open shooters. Redick, Belinelli, Ilyasova, Covington, you know what to do.
Heat burn 76ers
I’m picking Miami, listed as +500 favorites in most sportsbooks today, to come out on top. Justise Winslow is going to rediscover some of that game 3 magic while D-Wade is about to have a massive performance off the bench.
Josh Richardson’s return combined with the strong play of Miami guards is going to be enough. They will grind out a close one, by 5 or fewer points, to move things to 3-2 in the series.