NBA playoff preview and tips: Miami Heat at New York Knicks
Miami overturned an 11-point first-quarter deficit to steal an unexpected 108-101 victory in game one at Madison Square Garden. The Heat and the Knicks face off in game two late on Tuesday.
Knicks are 10-4-1ATS in their last 15 games at home.
Knicks are 19-7ATS in their last 26 games played on a Tuesday.
Under is 6-0-1 in New York's last 7 playoff games as a favourite.
Under is 5-2 in Miami's last 7 Eastern Conference Semifinal games.
New York Knicks -6.5
Under 207 points
If you check the history books, the Heat aren't even meant to be here. Their five-game victory over the Milwaukee Bucks was the fourth time in NBA history that a number eight seed has eliminated a number one seed.
They got off to a rough start against the Knicks in game one. The atmosphere was electric inside Madison Square Garden, as RJ Barrett and Jalen Brunson did as they pleased in a 32-point first quarter.
Miami steadied the ship by half-time and produced some solid, defence-first basketball in the second half, led by Kyle Lowry.
Lowry was an animal in the best all-around performances of the playoffs so far, scoring 18 points from the bench and recording six assists, five rebounds and four blocks. He dominated on both ends of the court.
The Knicks really missed an opportunity by not capitalising on Jimmy Butler's injury. Jimmy Buckets lived up to his name on the night, scoring 25 points, but suffered an ankle sprain on a drive to the basket late in the fourth quarter.
Butler scored 25 points and pulled in 11 rebounds. He dusted himself down to make two free throws, extending Miami's lead to 97-92, but went scoreless for the remainder of the game. The Knicks failed to seize the opportunity.
The spread has jumped from Knicks -4 to -6.5 for game two, while the opening total has dropped from 210.5 to 207.
We won't know until the day of the game if Jimmy Butler will feature, but it actually makes sense if he doesn't. Miami has stolen home-court advantage with the win and the focus should be on getting him right for game three.
Whilst the Heat can win without him, we don't think they will. The Knicks could tighten things up for game two and come up with a plan to limit Kyle Lowry, allowing them to tie the series 1-1. Back the Knicks to win in a low-scoring game.
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