The Miami Heat (35-20) visit the Big Easy Thursday to play the New Orleans Pelicans (22-32). Tip-off at Smoothie King Center is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. ET. Below, we look at the Heat at Pelicans odds and lines, and make our expert NBA picks, predictions and bets.
Miami has won and covered three straight road games – at the Spurs 112-95 Feb. 3, Hornets 104-86 Saturday and the Wizards 121-100 Monday. The Heat are 4-3 straight-up (SU) and 3-4 against the spread (ATS) since Jan. 28.
New Orleans is on a 4-game winning streak, but those wins didn’t come against the best competition. The Pelicans beat the awful Pistons and Rockets (twice) and an inconsistent Nuggets squad over those four games. NOLA is 4-3 SU and 5-2 ATS since Jan. 28.
The Heat crushed the Pelicans 113-98 in Miami as 6.5-point home favorites Nov. 17 and the Over cashed on a 210-point total. Miami was even without PG Kyle Lowry and All-Star C Bam Adebayo.
Heat at Pelicans odds, spread and lines
Odds provided by Tipico Sportsbook; access USA TODAY Sports Scores and Sports Betting Odds hub for a full list. Lines last updated at 12:59 p.m. ET.
- Money line: Heat -190 (bet $190 to win $100) | Pelicans +155 (bet $100 to win $155)
- Against the spread: Heat -4.5 (-110) | Pelicans +4.5 (-110)
- Over/Under (O/U): 217.5 (O: -112 | U: -108)
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Heat at Pelicans key injuries
- PG Tyler Herro (knee) probable
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Heat at Pelicans odds, lines, picks and predictions
Heat 115, Pelicans 106
I’m very interested in NOLA after it acquired SG C.J. McCollum via trade earlier this week, especially since the Pelicans are the 10th and final play-in seed in the West currently. NOLA would get even more interesting if PF Zion Williamson returned this season.
However, I’m on Miami laying the points but hate the Heat (-190) at this price considering the Pelicans’ roster.
BET the HEAT -4.5 (-110) for 1 unit because the Pelicans struggle when they play strong competition and Miami is very profitable when well-rested.
According to CleaningTheGlass.com (CTG), the Pelicans are 6-14 SU versus teams in the top 10 of efficiency differential with a minus-10.4 adjusted-net rating (ranked 25th) and a minus-3.2 ATS margin (ranked 21st).
Furthermore, the Heat haven’t played since Monday and are 7-2 ATS with two or three days of rest (an NBA’s best plus-12.3 ATS margin) and an NBA-best 9-4 ATS when playing with a rest advantage (plus-6.8 ATS margin).
BET the HEAT -4.5 (-110).
LEAN to the OVER 217.5 (-112) because both teams have high offensive free-throw attempt and defensive free-throw attempt rates, so there should be a lot of easy points scored in this game.
Also, all three referees assigned to this game have officiated more to the Over. We could see a ton of free throws in this game.
But it’s only a “lean” to the OVER 217.5 (-112) since both teams play at a snail’s pace. NOLA is 15-26 O/U as an underdog and six of the last seven Heat-Pelicans meetings have gone Under the total.
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