Game: Miami Heat @ Boston Celtics
Time: 8:30 p.m.
Odds: Heat +8.5, Celtics -8.5
Moments after the Boston Celtics avoided being swept by the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference finals, team members started discussing a return trip to South Florida. That is exactly what will happen if the Celtics can defeat the Heat tonight in Game 5 in Boston.
The second-seeded Celtics won Game 4 on Tuesday night 116-99 to avoid being swept by the Heat. Jayson Tatum scored 25 of his 33 points in the second half, including 14 in the third quarter when Boston dominated Miami 38–23. After the break, Tatum made 11-of-15 attempts from the field. He wasn’t the only one on fire. For the game, the Celtics shot 51.2 percent from the field (43-of-84) and 40 percent from beyond the three-point line (18-of-45).
Boston didn’t play well in the first three games of the series. They were more like the team that averaged over 117 points a game during the regular season on Tuesday night. They will need another big night tonight. However, the postseason has not been kind to the home tenants at TD Garden. Five of the Celtics’ last seven games in Boston have ended in a loss. On the other hand, Miami had won six straight playoff games at home before Tuesday’s loss.
The Heat missed their first chance to secure a spot in the NBA Finals for the second time in four seasons. They also missed their first opportunity to become the second eighth-seeded club in the league to make it to the NBA Finals, joining the 1998–1999 New York Knicks.
Jimmy Butler had team-highs in points (29) and rebounds (9) on Tuesday for Miami. He’s averaging 26.8 points, 7.5 rebounds, and 6.0 assists per game in this series. Butler is scoring 29.9 points a game for the entire postseason. Miami has seven players averaging in double figures for the postseason. One of those is Caleb Martin who made his first six attempts from the field on Tuesday and scored 14 of his 16 points in the first quarter.
With Tuesday’s loss, Miami is now 5-1 SU and ATS in its last six games against Boston. The Heat has been strong against the number, going 10-3 ATS in the team’s last 13 games. That goes against what Miami has done all season long – 42-54-3 ATS. The Celtics, on the other hand, are 54-44-1 ATS this season, including 28-22-1 at home. Boston has covered just once – on Tuesday night – in this series.
Game 4 was the first in this series to see the total go Under. The Over has been the trend for both teams. Eleven of Miami’s last 15 games have gone Over. It’s the same for Boston. Eleven of the Celtics’ last 15 games have gone Over the total.
This is the third time in the past four seasons that Boston and Miami have met in the Eastern Conference finals. The Heat won the series in 2020 and the Celtics won it last season. Both teams lost in the NBA Finals.
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