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Celtics vs. Heat prediction, odds: 2023 NBA Eastern Conference finals picks, Game 5 best bets by proven model

On Thursday evening, the Miami Heat have an opportunity to clinch a berth in the 2023 NBA Finals. The Heat lead the Boston Celtics by a 3-1 margin in the 2023 Eastern Conference finals, with Game 5 on the horizon. Miami took the first two games in Boston and the series returns to TD Garden for Game 5. The Celtics awakened with a lopsided victory in Game 4 on Tuesday, staying alive in the series despite a difficult overall task. Gabe Vincent (ankle) is out for Miami.

Caesars Sportsbook lists the Celtics as 8-point favorites, and tip-off is scheduled for 8:30 p.m. ET. The total number of points Vegas thinks will be scored, or the over/under, is 215.5 in the latest Heat vs. Celtics odds. Before making any Celtics vs. Heat picks, you need to see the NBA playoff predictions and betting advice from SportsLine’s advanced computer model.

The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every NBA game 10,000 times and has returned well over $10,000 in profit for $100 players on its top-rated NBA picks over the past four-plus seasons. The model entered the conference finals of the 2023 NBA playoffs a stunning 72-38 on all top-rated NBA picks this season, returning nearly $2,900. Anyone following it has seen huge returns.

Now, the model has set its sights on Heat vs. Celtics and just locked in its picks and NBA playoff predictions. You can head to SportsLine now to see the model’s picks. Here are several NBA betting lines and trends for Celtics vs. Heat:

  • Celtics vs. Heat spread: Celtics -8
  • Celtics vs. Heat over/under: 215.5 points
  • Celtics vs. Heat money line: Celtics -305, Heat +240
  • MIA: The Heat are 21-26-1 against the spread in road games
  • BOS: The Celtics are 28-22 against the spread in home games
  • Celtics vs. Heat picks: See picks at SportsLine

Featured Game | Boston Celtics vs. Miami Heat

Why the Heat can cover

Miami encountered a hiccup in Game 4, but the team is playing excellent basketball in the playoffs. The Heat are renowned for strong defensive principles, which were evident throughout the regular season and ever-present in the playoffs. Miami’s offense is particularly intriguing in a playoff context, led by 29.9 points per game on 50.5% shooting from Jimmy Butler in the postseason. The Heat are scoring almost 1.17 points per possession in the playoffs, including nearly 1.20 points per possession in the series against the Celtics.

Miami has a stellar 61.6% true shooting mark against Boston, including 50% shooting from the field, and the Heat are shooting 47.7% from the field and 38.0% from 3-point range in the full postseason. Ball security is also a strength for Miami with only 12.5 turnovers per game in the playoffs and, on the other end, the Heat create more than 14 turnovers per game that lead to 19.9 points per game, leading the 2023 NBA playoffs in that category. See which team to pick here.

Why the Celtics can cover

Boston’s Game 4 recipe reflected its season-long excellence in many ways. The Celtics scored 1.22 points per possession against the Heat on Tuesday, shooting 51% from the field and 40% from 3-point range. Boston also generated 28 assists with only 10 turnovers, and the Celtics were able to create and convert efficient looks throughout the game. The Celtics finished in the top three of the NBA in offensive efficiency (117.3 points per 100 possessions) during the regular season, and Boston is scoring 1.17 points per possession in the playoffs. 

The Celtics also lead the postseason with a 60.0% true shooting mark, and Boston has more than twice as many assists (24.9 per game) than turnovers (12.4 per game) in playoff games. Boston has a pair of legitimate stars in Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, both of whom averaged more than 26 points per game in the regular season. In addition, the Celtics held the Heat to just 1.05 points per possession with 8-32 shooting from 3-point range on defense in Game 4. See which team to pick here.

How to make Celtics vs. Heat picks

SportsLine’s model is leaning Over on the total, projecting 220 combined points. The model also says one side of the spread hits in over 50% of simulations. You can only see the model’s NBA playoff picks at SportsLine.

So who wins Heat vs. Celtics, and which side of the spread hits over 50% of the time? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the Celtics vs. Heat spread you need to jump on Thursday, all from the model that is 72-38 on its top-rated NBA picks this season, and find out.  

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