The Boston Celtics host the Miami Heat in an intriguing Eastern Conference matchup on Tuesday evening. Miami (37-31) won the most recent matchup in Boston, and the sixth-placed Heat are two games ahead of the Celtics (35-33) in the Eastern Conference pecking order. Jaylen Brown (wrist) and Robert Williams (toe) are out for the Celtics. Victor Oladipo (knee) is out for the Heat.
Tip-off is set for 7:30 p.m. ET in Boston. The latest Celtics vs. Heat odds from William Hill Sportsbook list Miami as the 1.5-point favorite. The over-under for total points is set at 225. Before finalizing any Heat vs. Celtics picks, be sure to see the NBA predictions and betting advice from SportsLine's proven computer model.
The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every NBA game 10,000 times and has returned over $9,100 in profit on its top-rated NBA picks over the past two-plus seasons. The model is up over $1,100 on its top-rated picks this season and entered Week 21 of the 2020-21 NBA schedule on a stunning 99-64 roll on top-rated NBA picks against the spread dating back to last season. Anybody who has followed it has seen huge returns.
- Heat vs. Celtics spread: Heat -1.5
- Heat vs. Celtics over-under: 225 points
- Heat vs. Celtics money line: Heat -120, Celtics +100
- MIA: The Heat are 6-4 against the spread in the last 10 games
- BOS: The Celtics are 3-7 against the spread in the last 10 games
Why the Heat can cover
The Heat are led by a pair of stars in Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo. Butler has been fantastic this season, leading the team with 21.6 points per game and stuffing the stat sheet with 7.2 assists, 7.0 rebounds and 2.1 steals per game. Adebayo is the team's inside presence, averaging 18.9 points, 9.0 rebounds and 5.3 assists per game, and he is also an elite defensive player. That pairing not only keys the offense but establishes the baseline for a top-eight defense in the NBA.
The Heat are elite in multiple defensive categories, headlined by a turnover creation rate of 15.6 percent, and they can take full advantage of Boston's weaknesses. The Celtics are a bottom-10 team in both free throw creation and prevention, ranking 27th in the NBA in free throw rate allowed defensively. Boston is also below-average in ball security, committing a turnover on 14.3 percent of offensive possessions this season.
Why the Celtics can cover
Boston's offense is impressive in nature, with the team scoring more than 1.13 points per possession this season. The Celtics are a top-10 team in overall efficiency, and they make their mark on the offensive glass, securing 29.2 percent of their own missed shots. Boston is also above-average from the perimeter, converting 37.4 percent of its 3-pointers, and it has a fortunate defensive matchup against Miami. The Heat are just 22nd in offensive efficiency, scoring 110.1 points per 100 possessions, and Miami is second-worst in the NBA in offensive rebound rate (23.9 percent).
The Heat also struggle to take care of the ball, committing a turnover on 14.4 percent of possessions, and Boston is above-average in turnover creation rate (14.3 percent) on the defensive end. Finally, the Celtics are a top-10 team in assists allowed (24.1 per game), blocked shots (5.3 per game) and points allowed in the paint (44.2 per game), all of which should come in handy against Miami.
How to make Heat vs. Celtics picks
SportsLine's model is leaning under on the total, projecting the teams to combine for 216 points. The model also says one side of the spread hits well over 50 percent of the time. You can get that pick at SportsLine.
So who wins Heat vs. Celtics? And which side of the spread hits well over 50 percent of the time? Visit SportsLine now to find out which side of the spread you need to jump on, all from the model that is on a roll on NBA picks.