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    Boston Celtics vs. Miami Heat NBA Playoffs Game 5 Preview

    Basketball   |   May 25, 2022

     
    The Miami Heat host the Boston Celtics in a crucial Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals on Wednesday. The Celtics evened the series 2-2 after a convincing 102-82 win in Game 4.

    Boston Celtics vs. Miami Heat

    Wednesday, May 25, 2022 – 08:30 PM EDT at FTX Arena

    Which Heat Will Show Up?

    The Heat’s starting five scored 18 points in Game 4. That’s the fewest by a starting five in the playoffs since starters were first tracked in 1971. That has to change in Game 5 or things will get ugly again. Bam Adebayo was the key to Game 3 with 31 points, 10 rebounds and six assists but he had just nine points and six rebounds on Monday while Jimmy Butler and Kyle Lowry combined for just nine points. The Heat won win this series unless these three players dominate, especially if Tyler Herro misses Game 5.

    Herro missed Game 4 due to a groin injury suffered in Game 3. His absence is significant as he is one of the Heat’s few half-court shot-creators. The reigning Sixth Man of the Year scored 18 points in Game 1 but he has largely struggled since and overall, his playoffs have been uneven, as he has shot just 23.2 percent from beyond the arc and he’s struggled defensively.

    That said, with Jimmy Butler and Kyle Lowry at less than 100 percent, having Tyler Herro available to help generate shots is extremely important. According to Chris Haynes from Yahoo Sports, Herro plans to play on Wednesday.

    If he’s out, the Heat will have to lean more on Victor Oladipo and Duncan Robinson again. Oladipo has grabbed a larger rotational role after missing most of the season due to injury and he played well on Monday with 23 points, six assists and four rebounds in 30 minutes. Robinson fell out of the rotation earlier in the playoffs but he filled in for Herro on Monday and delivered with 14 points on 5 of 11 shooting and 4 of 8 from 3-point range in 23 minutes.
    Miami’s greatest challenge in this series is how long will their lockdown defense hold up? Boston has shot makers and great offense always beats great defense if great defense can’t score. Will the Heat get the best versions of Butler, Lowry, Adebayo, Herro, Oladipo and Robinson?
    X-Factors

    Jayson Tatum had just 10 points of 3 of 14 shooting and 1 of 7 from 3-point range in Game 3 but he imposed his will early and led the Celtics with 31 points on Monday. Tatum always bounces back after a bad game… that’s always what mattered for all the greats. They don’t think twice about a bad shooting night and the Celtics need another monster game from him in Game 5.
    As we predicted ahead of Game 4, the X-Factor was Robert Williams, who missed Game 3 due to left knee soreness. Williams missed nearly four weeks due to a torn meniscus in his left knee and he suffered a bone bruise on his left knee in Game 3 of the second round series against the Bucks in a collision with Giannis Antetokounmpo. That injury forced him to miss five of his next seven games but Williams was difference-maker, helping Horford contain Adebayo and finishing with 12 points and nine rebounds in 19 minutes.

    DafaNews Picks

    Team to Win (Regular Time)
    • Boston Celtics 1.85
    • Miami Heat 2.04

    Spread
    • Boston Celtics -1.5 (1.90)
    • Miami Heat +1.5 (1.91)

    Total
    • Over 203.5 (1.90)
    • Under 203.5 (1.90)

    Betting Trends

    The Celtics are:

    • 30-16 ATS in road games this season
    • 28-16 ATS after allowing 105 points or less this season
    • 33-18 ATS when playing against a team with a winning record this season
    • 22-9 ATS when playing against a team with a winning record in the second half of the season

    The Over is:

    • 63-54 in 117 games in this series since 1996
    • 12-6 in 18 games in this series over the last three seasons
    • 34-22 in the 56 games played at Miami in this series since 1996

    Projected Leaders

    For the Celtics, Jayson Tatum is expected to score 24.8 points with 7.9 rebounds and 5.4 assists, making 7.9 field goals in 18.8 attempts.

    For the Heat, Jimmy Butler is projected to finish with 22.4 points, 6.6 rebounds and 5.6 assists, making 6.5 field goals in 16.2 attempts.

    Analyst’s Pick

    Celtics -1.5 (1.90) and Over 203.5 (1.90)

    Four-star (out of four) AccuScore hot trend picks on the Celtics and the total in this one. Average score in simulations is Boston Celtics 107.4 to Miami Heat 101.5.

    Make sure to check all other MLB, NFL, NCAA, NHL, NBA and soccer game predictions from AccuScore and Dafanews.com

     

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