Miami Heat vs. Boston Celtics Predictions: NBA Playoff Picks

Game 3 of the Eastern Conference is set for Saturday. Can the Celtics prevent a loss and stop the Heat from going up 3-0?
Eytan Shander
Sat, September 19, 8:22 AM EDT

The Eastern Conference Finals rolls on as the Heat look to do the same to the Celtics. One of two things should happen tonight, either the C’s bounce back in tremendous fashion or they wilt under the extreme pressure. Already reports of the locker room breaking down, Boston is on life support heading into game 3.

Miami Heat vs. Boston Celtics Predictions

BET: Celtics 1st Half Winner -1 @ -110

This is definitely going to be a tight game for the most part, with the exception of a big Celtics run. When that run comes will be tough to tell, but following their first two losses, Boston is too talented to come out sluggish. I’m counting on that run coming early on in the game, which would certainly cement them winning the first half. I don’t trust Boston for four quarters against Miami, but we have a couple more bets below to take advantage of that one. The Heat have created some breathing room by winning two straight games, and despite that monster comeback in game 2, should let up a little bit early on tonight. I do think Miami can win this game but it’s going to take another comeback to do it.

Celtics 1H -1 @ -110

BET: Under 204 @ +125

Low scoring affair! With everything we have seen so far in this series, they needed OT to really push the total and even a monster comeback didn’t truly light up the board. Now that Boston is feeling an immense amount of pressure and the Heat know they have the C’s where they want them, expect a lower scoring game tonight, one that should sneak under 204. There is tremendous value at +125 for this bet, knowing the risk that comes with it, but look more at Boston here being the culprit for this game flying under. The Celtics turned it over 20 times last game and that should be their key adjustment. Miami got a break with fewer than 10, so both teams taking care of the basketball means less transition, and a lower total. I also like Boston’s defense becoming more aggressive tonight, fueled by the fear of elimination lurking. With Bam coming alive, look for the Heat to work the ball down low a little more, especially slowing it down in half-court sets.

Under 204 @ +105

BET: Celtics -3 @ -106

This is really the last shot the Celtics have at staying alive in this series. Going down 3-0 is a death sentence and they are clearly aware of it. They are going to have to solve either Bam or Goran Dragic at some point tonight, and as tough as that may sound, just keeping one guy under wraps will be enough to win. Miami did a ton last time out to secure the victory, including that huge comeback. You have to wonder how much they have left to duplicate anything close to that, if/when Boston gets back up. The Celtics have shown already – even in game 2 – they have the talent to get up on Miami. Between Brad Stevens on the bench and Jason Tatum on the floor, they learned from how bad of a letdown they had in game 2 and won’t fall into that same trap. One more thing to look at is the turnovers, while Boston was unable to hold on to the ball, Miami was great. There should be a shift in that imbalance come tonight, especially since the Heat will be guarded tighter than at any point of the series so far. This is a big night for Boston, they win the game, cover the spread, and take the first half!

Celtics -3 @ -106

Eytan Shander
Eytan is a 14-year talk radio veteran and has been doing local TV in Philadelphia for the past three years. He is currently hosting shows on SB Nation Radio & Fox Sports Radio in Philadelphia. Shander also contributes at FOX29’s Good Day as a sports analyst, such is his depth of knowledge. A great guy to follow if you want to know how the big game will go down.
Oct 2020

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