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NBA Finals preview and tips: Miami Heat at Denver Nuggets - Game One

Denver Nuggets play host to Miami Heat at Ball Arena in Game One of the NBA Finals on Thursday night.

Nikola Jokic and Denver Nuggets are expected to storm to victory against the number eight seed, but Miami keep making history and won't let the Larry O'Brien trophy go without a fight.

Suggested bets

Over 218.5 points

Standout trends

Nuggets are 13-6ATS in their last 19 against a team with a winning record.
Over is 10-1 in Denver's last 11 against a team with a winning record.
Heat are 5-11ATS in their last 16 games after a win of 10+ points.
Over is 12-4 in Miami's last 16 games as an underdog.

Heat @ Nuggets - Game One verdict

The unthinkable so nearly happened, but Miami got it together and put in their best performance when it mattered. Back against the wall in game seven, they beat the Celtics 103-84.
Denver Nuggets made much easier work of advancing to the finals. They beat the Los Angeles Lakers 4-0 and improved their playoff record to 12-3. They're a force and SX.bet have made Denver a -8.5 favourite on the spread.
It's a huge week for sports fans in Florida with the Florida Panthers making it to the Stanley Cup in the NHL playoffs.
Miami were the number eight seed at the start of the playoffs and only made it after losing their first play-in game. They're just the second eight seed to do it, after the Knicks in 1999.
In our lifetimes, we don't expect to see another team lose their play-in game, win the second chance and make it all the way to the NBA Finals.
The problem that awaits Miami here is not just an elite Denver team with the best player in the NBA, but one that's had an extended period of rest.
That's not always a good thing, but there has to be both an emotional and physical toll on what happened to Miami. Leading 3-0, it was over. Tied at 3-3 and having to put on that intense a performance in Boston has to be draining.
So, we don't expect the defence to be at its best this evening and that makes the over worth a look. The line opened at 219 which feels low.
Denver have averaged 115 points per game in their opening two home matches of a series, but that number has been created by a lower-scoring effort and a 120+ point effort.
The first game of Miami's series against Milwaukee produced 247 points while the game against Boston finished 123-116 in their favour. They've averaged 120 points in game one.
The over is 10-1 in Denver's last 10 home matches against a winning team and also 12-4 in Miami's last 16 games as an underdog.
Just because you're tired, it doesn't mean you can't attack. It does mean you can't defend, and we don't see how they stop Jokic from contributing to a big number tonight. Bet on over 218.5 points in game one.

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