NBA Eastern Conference Finals Betting Tips – Celtics-Heat Game 1
After beating the Bucks and Nets, Jayson Tatum and the Boston Celtics now head to Miami to take on Jimmy Butler and the Heat in a battle of the top two seeds in the Eastern Conference. The Celtics and Heat last met in the 2020 Eastern Conference Finals at Walt Disney World, with Miami edging out Boston in six games.
Tatum and Butler will provide plenty of entertainment for the series, as they are both among the top 5 scorers this post-season. Tatum is coming off a pair of 40-point games over the past two rounds, including his 46-point performance in Game 6 against the Bucks, while Butler has 30-plus points in three of his last four games.
Our betting experts break down the first-round series and give their tips and plays for Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals.
All odds provided by Caesars Sportsbook.
What you need to know for Celtics-Heat Game 1
Betting on Bam: There’s no shortage of stars in this series and it’s possible the aftermarket is a little inefficient when it comes to rating Bam Adebayo. The Celtics are the second-best defense in points per possession. The books are well aware of this and have lowered the Heat’s expectations accordingly, but is it the right move? Adebayo has averaged 18.4 points on 54.8 percent shooting, 10 rebounds and 4.3 assists against the top 10 defenses this season. His point and rebound totals may be low, but his assist numbers are one to watch against a Boston team that just finished a grueling streak with Milwaukee.
Brown on the boards: Jaylen Brown has averaged 14 rebound opportunities over the last three games of the Eastern Conference Semifinals – second only to Al Horford. Brown’s bouncy 5.5 prop seems quite doable given its presence on the glass. While Brown’s combined points and rebounds are reasonable on most platforms, Horford enters Game 1 with a solid chance to top 10 rebounds. He averaged 16.6 rebound chances in the Milwaukee series, making him a fun target for higher-odds double-double props.
–Jim McCormick and Kyle Soppe
Break down game 1
Boston Celtics at Miami Heat
8:30 p.m. ET, FTX Arena, Miami, FLA
Double: Heat (-2)
Money line: Heat (-130), Celtics (+110)
Total: 204 dots
BPI Total projected: 209.3 points
BPI gain %: Heat (62.2%)
Excluded: Kyle Lowry (hamstrings),
Note: BPI figures take excluded players into account, but assume questionable players will play.
Questionable: Marcus Smart (foot), Caleb Martin (ankle), Gabe Vincent (hamstring), Max Strus, PJ Tucker (calf)
Notable: Under bets are 9-2 in Miami games this postseason (in those nine “unders” the Heat have covered six times)
Best bet: Heat to win series (+155).The Heat have the best defense the Celtics have faced in the playoffs. Miami is great at switching defensemen and will challenge Boston more than the Bucks and Nets. Erik Spoelstra is an experienced coach who can adapt using different personnel groups and styles. –Eric Moody
Best bet: Celtics win the series in 6 games (-1.5, +105). These two teams fit together very well, with elite defenses and wing-led attacks. The Celtics went 2-1 against the Heat in the regular season, with both of their wins being blowouts. Boston has a more diverse offense and a suffocating defense. They should be able to win this series. — Andre Snellings
Best bet: Jimmy Butler on 37.5 points + assists + rebounds. Butler is going to have to carry a lot of the load for the Heat, but he’s capable of delivering on the big stage. He’s a competent shooter inside and outside the paint and averaged 28.7 PPG, 5.4 APG, and 7.6 RPG during the playoffs. Butler’s momentum is expected to continue in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals. –Eric Moody
Best bet: Jaylen Brown with over 23.5 points. Brown has averaged 16.5 MGF and 22.2 PPG this postseason. Given the history of these two teams, this series will be all about defense, with Jayson Tatum catching the eye. There is a possibility of incompatibility with Brown taking on the Heat’s inferior defenders. — Moody
Best bet: Heat -1.5. I put the -1.5 with Miami for three main reasons: first, the Heat enter Game 1 with five days off, unlike a Celtics team that won Game 7 on Sunday and now has a game on the road in South Florida 48 hours. later. Second, Miami has been excellent at home this year, winning 29 games during the regular season (most in the Eastern Conference and 4th in the NBA) before posting a perfect 6-0 record in SU and a record 5-1 against the ATS in the playoffs. Finally, Boston is headed for shooting regression after knocking down 39.7% of their 3-point attempts in Games 6 and 7 against Milwaukee, especially considering Miami ranked first in the NBA. on 3-point defense this season. (33.9 percent). –Joe Fortenbaugh
Best bet: Jayson Tatum under 28.5 points. Tatum has averaged 28.2 PPG this postseason, with seven of his 11 outings scoring 29 or more. So why rush to bet the bottom here? To start, look at the competition. Brooklyn and Milwaukee both ranked 14th or lower in defensive rating and 11th or better in pace during the regular season. Conversely, Miami ranked fourth in defensive rating and 28th in pace. Dropping 29 on the Bucks is a very different exercise from dropping 29 on a rested Miami team. –Fortenbaugh
Best bet: Jaylen Brown on 2.5 did 3s. The Heat like to force their opponents to take 3 points and I think that will work to the advantage of the Celtics. Tatum will be the main focus of Miami’s defense and Brown has hit over 2.5 3s in four of his last seven games. The Celtics scored 53 3-pointers more than the Bucks during the series, the biggest gap in a single series this postseason. –Erin Dolan
Best bet: Over 204 points. These teams have played twice this season, totaling 204 and 214 points. Both have strong defenses but come into this series with confidence on offense after facing tough competition. The Heat have averaged 112 PPG this postseason, scoring at least 115 points four times in the past six games. The Celtics are coming off a record 3-point shooting performance in Game 7 against the Bucks, and their scorers are locked in for the time being. There will be games under 204 points in this series, but I don’t believe it will be in Game 1. –Snellings