Boston Celtics at Miami Heat Game 1 Expert Picks, Odds and Predictions – NBA Playoffs Betting Preview 4/30/11: The NBA playoff second round tips off today with head coach Doc Rivers leading the defending Eastern Conference Champion Boston Celtics on the road to the American Airlines Arena to take on 2 time (with Cleveland) defending MVP LeBron James and the Miami Heat at 3:30 PM ET on ABC Sports. This playoff matchup has been anticipated since last summer when James announced “I’m taking my talents to South Beach” along with Dwayne Wade remaining and big man Chris Bosh joining the Heat as well. The Heat put on a Gala to introduce the players fit for the Royal Wedding and expectations became an NBA Championship or bust!
Talk of the Heat breaking Chicago’s record of 72 regular season wins quickly dissipated after the Heat started at just 9-8 and needed a players only meeting to all get on the same page. The Celtics won the regular season series 3-1 winning the first 3 games but losing late in the year 100-77 falling from 1st in the East with a late slide that landed them the 3rd playoff seed and with the Heat having the 2nd and the home court advantage in this series. The series will follow a 2-2-1-1-1 game format. The odds makers at Bodog have the Miami Heat a -5 point favorite at home against the Boston Celtics.
The Heat are coming off a 4-1 series victory over the young talented Philadelphia 76ers to seal their advance to face the Celtics. The self-proclaimed “Heatles” Big 3 are well spread out offensively with LeBron 6th in the NBA Playoffs averaging 24.2 points a game, Wade at 10th with a 22.2 average, and Bosh at 18th with a 19.8 average posing a balance that will be difficult for even Boston’s defense to defend. The talented trio also is all in the top 20 in rebounding with James at 5th with 10.6 rebounds per game, Bosh 16th at 9.0, and Wade at 19th 8.4 per game. Wade is averaging 1.86 assists per game for 12th while James 4.43 is 6th and he is 2nd in the NBA playoffs in assist to turnover ratio. Vegas odds makers have the Miami Heat +260 to win the 2010-2011 NBA Championship.
The Celtics Swept the New York Knicks 4-0 to advance to the second round of the NBA playoffs. Point guard Rajon Rondo leads the NBA Playoffs with 12 assists per game and is 20th with 19.0 points per game. Forward Paul Pierce is 9th in playoff scoring with 22.3 points per game while shooting guard Ray Allen is 11th in scoring with a 22 point average. Big Kevin Garnett is 28th with a 15.5 point per game average to go with 11.3 rebounds per game good for 3rd in the league playoffs. Vegas odds makers have the over/under for the total score at 182 points combined of the Boston Celtics and Miami Heat.
Free Pick: Miami Heat -5
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|GAME 1 Boston Celtics at Miami Heat
Time: 3:35 PM EST
2011 NBA 1st Round Playoffs Series: Series Tied 0-0
Vegas Odds –
Favorite: Miami Heat -5(pointspread) Total: Over/Under 182
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