Game: Los Angeles Clippers @ Miami Heat
Time: 7:30 p.m.
Odds: Clippers +5, Heat -5
On the second night of a back-to-back, the Clippers travel to Miami to take on the Heat. The Heat will present more of a challenge than Orlando, the team the Clippers lost to last night. The injury reports for this game list a number of prominent players, but the Heat are the better-rested team and they are playing on their home court. That gives Miami an advantage heading into tonight.
The Clippers have significantly underperformed on the offensive end of the floor this season. They have two of the best scorers in the NBA in Paul George and Kawhi Leonard. Both are healthy, but the Clippers are actually the lowest team in the NBA. The Clippers average 107.2 points per game.
Los Angeles is very limited on the offensive end of the floor due to the inconsistent performances of their stars and the limited bench production. Injuries have also been a significant factor in those struggles. However, the Clippers’ defense is the big reason why they are above .500 (14-12) this season. The Clippers rank among the top-5 in defensive rating and in opponent points per game (108.8 ppg).
Los Angeles should be able to slow down a shorthanded Miami. Gabe Vincent is the only Heat player who is out for tonight, but the injury report is full of question marks. Jimmy Butler and Dewayne Dedmon are questionable and a number of other Miami players are listed as probable.
The Heat also excel on defense. They rank ninth in opponent points per game allowing 110.2 points per game. There is also the possibility that the Clippers decide to rest a few starters on the second night of a back-to-back. That could also work in Miami’s favor. The Heat has lost three of its last four games and desperately needs a win. The Miami offense scored 93 in a loss to Memphis on Monday and 96 in a loss to Detroit on Tuesday. The Heat now rank 28th in points per game.
With outstanding defenses and subpar offenses, this game should be very low-scoring. Despite both teams being very good on defense and lackluster on offense, both teams trend Over in-game totals. Four of the last five Clippers games have gone Over the total. The total has gone Over in six of Miami’s last seven home games. In the series between the two teams, the Over is 6-0 in the six meetings.
The Clippers have won six of the last ten against Miami. L.A. is 7-3 ATS in those ten games. Both teams have been strong defensive teams over the last few seasons. In the last ten games between them, the O/U record is 6-3-1. Those ten games have averaged 220 points per.
Los Angeles has won six of the last seven against Miami. The Clippers are also 6-1 ATS in those seven games. On the road in Miami, the Clippers are 5-0 ATS in the last five games.
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