The Philadelphia 76ers are the betting favorites when they host the Miami Heat tonight, but the line is moving in the Heat’s direction. This game will be nationally televised on TNT with tipoff at 7:30pm ET.
Keep an eye on the injury report, as both teams could be missing a few players from the starting lineup. Tyrese Maxey, P.J. Tucker and De’Anthony Melton are all questionable for Philadelphia, while Kyle Lowry and Bam Adebayo are questionable for Miami. With just three games left before the playoffs and their seeding already locked in, Philadelphia could also choose to rest its star players, Joel Embiid and James Harden.
Depending on the status of those players, the betting prediction and best bet picks could change before tipoff.
Read on for in-depth analysis of tonight’s Heat vs. 76ers matchup.
Miami Heat vs. Philadelphia 76ers Betting Odds
The 76ers opened with a betting spread of -5.5, but that line had dropped to -3 as of this writing. Oddsmakers could be adjusting to the fact that Philadelphia is already locked into the third seed in the Eastern Conference, while Miami is trying to move up to the sixth seed to avoid the play-in tournament.
Moneyline odds have the 76ers at -150 while the Heat are at +130. Those lines opened at -210 and +180, respectively.
The public is betting on the Heat to cover the spread, as 60% of the handle at DraftKings is on Miami, per VSiN. Philadelphia is getting more action on the moneyline, where 55% of the money and 78% of the bets are on the Sixers.
The over/under for this game opened at 220.5 and has held steady at that number. The public is taking the over with roughly 60% of the money.
The implied outcome of these odds is the 76ers winning 111.75-108.75.
Miami Heat vs. Philadelphia 76ers Prediction
My pick: Heat Moneyline
With their playoff seeding locked up, the assumption here is that coach Doc Rivers and the 76ers’ front office staff will choose to rest Embiid and Harden for the rest of the season. Both players have been dealing with nagging injuries late in the season – a calf for Embiid, and a sore Achilles for Harden – that could benefit from some additional rest.
With three other members of the top six players in their rotation also popping up on the injury report, Philadelphia could be very short-handed in this game.
Miami sits 1.5 games behind Brooklyn for the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference, which would mean a few days of rest during the play-in tournament and a matchup with the 76ers in the first round of the playoffs. That is a strong motivation for the Heat to play their injured stars, Adebayo and Lowry.
It’s tough to make a betting recommendation with so much uncertainty surrounding the lineups for both teams tonight, but all signs seem to be pointing towards the Heat having the advantage. I would grab the points while you can, and I like the plus odds for the Heat winning outright tonight.
I also like the over in this game, despite recent trends pointing towards the under (see below). Both of these teams have struggled defensively of late. Over their last seven games, both teams have a defensive rating over 120 – the Heat are at 120.1 while the Sixers are at 121.7. Those numbers are up significantly from their season-long ratings of 113.0 (Miami) and 112.6 (Philadelphia), which are both top 10 in the league.
The lineup uncertainty does make me hesitate to pick the over. What will the 76ers’ offense look like if they are missing several key players? However, games like that tend to skew towards faster-paced, higher-scoring games, so that would not stop me from betting the over in this one.
- The Heat are 1-5 ATS in their last six road games.
- The Under is 9-1 in the 76ers’ last 10 games on one days’ rest.
- The Under is 4-0 in the last 4 meetings between these teams.
The Heat need a great performance from their team leader Jimmy Butler in this game, while the 76ers need Tobias Harris to step up. Those are the key players from each team’s starting lineup tonight, but there could be some unsung heroes off the bench that make the difference.
Jimmy Butler vs. Tobias Harris
With injuries affecting several stars on both teams in this game, Butler and Harris might be the most important players for their respective teams tonight. They are also likely to spend a lot of time in this game matching up one on one.
Butler is having one of his best and most efficient seasons of his career on the offensive side. His 22.9 points per game is his best scoring average since his final season with Chicago in 2016-17. He is doing that while shooting an impressive 53.7% from the field, by far the best mark of his career.
Harris’ numbers are down across the board this season as he has struggled to settle into his role as the 76ers’ fourth option offensively. His 14.7 points per game is his lowest scoring output since 2015-16, which was also the last season his usage was below 20%.
Harris should see plenty of usage in this game, and what he does with those opportunities will be a big factor in how the 76ers perform against the Heat.
Each team’s depth will be on display in this matchup with several key players on both teams expected to be out. What players could take advantage of increased playing time?
Max Strus has been one of the first guys off the bench for the Heat all season, and he could play a bigger role tonight if Lowry is out. Strus had some big games against the 76ers in the playoffs last year, including 19- and 20-point outings in games five and six, respectively. Miami might need another game like that from him tonight.
For the 76ers, keep an eye on Shake Milton. He might actually end up starting if Harden, Maxey and Melton all miss the game. Milton is a streaky player who can fill it up when he gets hot, but he has been inconsistent as the Sixers’ fourth guard this season. If he gets extended minutes tonight, he could have a chance to get into a rhythm. If he does, we could see a big offensive performance by him.
The team that gets an unexpected performance from an unheralded player might have all the edge they need to get the victory tonight.
Miami Heat Starting Lineups
Philadelphia 76ers Starting Lineups
Miami Heat Injuries: C Bam Adebayo (Q – quadriceps), PG Kyle Lowry (Q – knee), SF Nikola Jovic (O – back), SF Marcus Garrett (O – wrist)
Philadelphia 76ers Injuries: PG Tyrese Maxey (Q – neck), PF P.J. Tucker (Q – calf), SG De’Anthony Melton (Q – calf)