Heat vs. Celtics Game 1 Prediction, NBA Playoffs Odds

admin | Updated Apr 20, 2024

NBA: Boston Celtics at Miami Heat

For the third year in a row the Miami Heat and Boston Celtics will tussle in the NBA Playoffs. Game 1 of their first-round series is Sunday afternoon.

April 21, 2024, 1:00 PM ET
TD Garden
Pointspread +14.5 -115
Moneyline +725
Over / Under o +209.5
Pointspread -14.5 -105
Moneyline -1200
Over / Under u +209.5

The big difference this time is that they renew hostilities at a much earlier stage of the postseason, this being the initial round as opposed to the conference final. As everybody knows, the Heat are taking on the Celtics without Jimmy Butler, who has a sprained MCL. Even if this series goes the distance he most likely won’t step on the court once.

For Game 1 the NBA odds have the host Celtics as massive -13.5 favourites, which seem a bit rough.

Heat vs. Celtics NBA Betting Odds

There is a ton of history to speak of between these clubs. Even if we limit the conversation to playoff bouts, the conversation would extend far beyond the word count we try to limit these game previews to. Suffice it to say that Miami and Boston have met three times in the past four years, each one being an Eastern Conference Final matchup. The Heat won twice and the Celtics once. Fans of both clubs recall, fondly or not, how Miami upset Boston in seven games last season to reach the NBA Finals. The Heat covered the spread in five of those seven games.

As for regular season meetings, it was a three-game sweep for the Celtics, although the last game was relatively close (110-106).

Apart from Butler, the Heat could be without Terry Rozier – former Celtic, incidentally. He missed Friday’s Play-In game because of a neck injury. Turning over to Boston, what ailments the stars were afflicted with have had an entire week to dealt with. More than a week, in fact, since coach Joe Mazzulla put in the b-team to finish off the regular season last weekend.

Miami Heat

Miami certainly hasn’t made it easy on themselves to get to the first round of the playoffs. They lost earlier in the week to the 76ers in the opening Play-In match, which meant they had to deal with the Chicago Bulls on Friday night to earn the eighth seed.

Despite missing their undisputed star, the Heat cruised to a 112-91 victory. If we can take anything from that game and apply it to how the team can potentially rustle Boston’s feathers, Miami is a more diversified club than one would think. On Friday night two names stood out: Jaime Jaquez Jr. and Tyler Herro. Jaquez is a rookie but didn’t play like one (21 points off 8-for-16 shooting) and Herro (24 points) is feeling confident and surely pleased about actually getting to partake in postseason action (an injury last year forced him to miss almost all of it). Don’t discount Kevin Love either, who has a history with the Celtics from his Cleveland days with LeBron James. Then there is Bam Adebayo, who is often a thorn in Boston’s side when they meet.

Boston Celtics

The Boston Celtics were showered with superlatives all season. Now they must play hard for two more months if they wish to finally capture the elusive 18th championship banner.

That is the knock against the Celtics, at least this generation. The Jayson TatumJaylen Brown duo, as good as it typically is, hasn’t come to fruition in the postseason. There have been good games, a few good series, but never a great run all the way to a win in the Finals. That’s why Kristaps Porzingis and Jrue Holiday. Holiday has the winning mentality from his time in Milwaukee and Porzingis provides a presence in the paint the Celtics haven’t had a in a few years. Don’t overlook Derrick White, who seems to play very loose in the fourth quarter when the going gets tough.

After a 64-18 regular season and as the second best offensive team in the league and the fifth best defensive one, a first round exit would be embarrassing.

NBA Prediction: Who Will Win Heat vs. Celtics Game 1?

NBA Predictions