Two familiar foes in the Miami Heat and Indiana Pacers will face off in game 1 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals on Tuesday. Photo from @MiamiHEAT (Twitter)
- The Miami Heat and Indiana Pacers kick off their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal with Game 1 on Tuesday at 4:00pm EST
- Although they’re the 5 seed, Miami is laying four points to the Pacers to open up the series
- Get the odds, preview, and best bet for Tuesday’s contest below
With the NBA Playoffs finally beginning this week, Tuesday, August 18th, brings an intriguing matchup when the Miami Heat face the Indiana Pacers in game 1 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, tip-off 4 PM EST.
The Heat and Pacers played each other on the last day of the seeding games in Orlando, with Indiana coming out on top behind Doug McDermott’s 23 points. However, their previous contest in the bubble resulted in a convincing win for Miami. On the season, Erik Spoelstra’s took three out of four games from the Pacers.
Miami Heat vs Indiana Pacers Game 1 Odds
|Team||Spread||Moneyline||Total Points at FanDuel|
|Miami Heat||-4 (-106)||-174||Ov 216 (-110)|
|Indiana Pacers||+4 (-114)||+146||Un 216 (-110)|
Odds taken August 17th
The latest Miami Heat vs Indiana Pacers Odds are favoring the Heat by four points on Tuesday.
Miami Looking to Continue Success Against Pacers
The Heat were one of the biggest surprises in the association this year, finishing 44-29 on the season. The addition of Jimmy Butler and breakout campaigns from the likes of Bam Adebayo and Kendrick Nunn were vital to their success.
However, Miami did struggle in the bubble, going just 3-5. Butler played in just four games though while battling a foot injury.
Undoubtedly the leader of this Heat team, his absence was definitely felt. Jimmy Buckets will be ready to go for Game 1 as he looks to lead Miami to a victory off the bat. He will be given the task of guarding T.J. Warren, who’s emerged as a star in Orlando for the Pacers.
Derrick Jones Jr., who’s been a key player off the bench for Erik Spoelstra, went down with a scary neck injury in a loss to Indiana on Friday. Thankfully, it was just a mild strain and he should return at some point throughout this series.
Miami has many offensive weapons and they love to shoot the three-ball. Tyler Herro and Duncan Robinson are lethal from downtown, while Nunn can make it rain as well. They’re second in the league with a 37.9 three-point shooting percentage.
Output comes from all over their roster as well, with seven different players averaging double-digits in points this year. From a depth standpoint, they have a lot more options than Indiana. But in the playoffs, anything is possible.
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Can Warren Continue to Dominate?
Without All-Star Domantas Sabonis and Victor Oladipo still getting back to full strength, the Pacers have actually impressed this season considering the circumstances. Thanks to their win against Miami on the final day of the regular season, they ended up finishing a game ahead of their Eastern Conference counterparts in fourth place.
One of the hottest topics in the bubble has been the absurd play of T.J. Warren, who has absolutely burst onto the scene and showed out on a nightly basis for Nate McMillan’s team.
Warren, who was traded to the Pacers last season from Phoenix, is averaging 19.8 points on the season. But, in Orlando, the 26-year old averaged 31 per night through six contests, including a 53-point performance in his first game, where he went 9 for 12 from the three-point range. He also went on to put up 39 against LeBron and the Lakers just a week later. However, the Heat did shut him down on August 10th, where Butler contained him to just 12 points.
Whether Warren keeps up his hot streak in the postseason remains to be seen, but it’s been a treat to watch. As a team, Indiana did very well in the seeding games, going 6-2. Oladipo is still recovering from an ankle issue, but he’s posted respectable numbers in limited minutes.
Personally, I think this series could go either way. But for Game 1, I do think Miami will grab a victory. Butler will need to find his best if they want to win this series, but he’s already shown he has what it takes to out-duel Warren.
I do think the Heat will come out firing on Tuesday and continue their dominance against Indiana. It may take Warren a game to find his footing in the playoffs, while Oladipo isn’t quite ready to lead the offense. With that in mind, Butler and co. will come out victorious in the opener of this Eastern Conference Quarterfinal.
Pick: Heat -4 (-106)
Quinn Allen is a sports journalist, with a background and education in broadcast journalism (BCIT ’17). He writes about European Football, Basketball, and Baseball for numerous sites across the globe.