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  • NBA Playoffs Game Two Tips And Picks: Heat @ Celtics, Pelicans @ Thunder

NBA playoffs game two tips and picks: Heat @ Celtics, Pelicans @ Thunder

There's a pair of NBA playoff clashes on Wednesday as the Boston Celtic host the Miami Heat (0030 BST Thurs) and the Oklahoma City Thunder welcome the New Orleans Pelicans (0230 BST Thurs).

The NBA playoffs are underway and we have a pair of delightful games to feast on late on Wednesday (early Thursday, BST) as we tuck into game two in Boston and Oklahoma.

With the Celtics and the Thunder leading the Heat and the Pelicans 1-0 in their first-round matchups, we’ve picked out the best bets for game two.

Wednesday’s NBA bets

Boston Celtics -14.5

Pelicans @ Thunder: Over 213.5


Miami Heat @ Boston Celtics (0030 BST)

The Boston Celtics crushed the Miami Heat, 114-94, in game one of the NBA playoffs. A blowout loss in an environment as competitive as the playoffs usually elicits a response, but it’s hard to see how the shorthanded Heat bounce back.

Jimmy Butler has been ruled out for the series, potentially joining Josh Richardson and Terry Rozier on the sidelines.

That leaves Bam Adebayo to try, supported by a lack of x-factor, to clang and bang his way to victory at the rim in game two, which also looks unlikely.

He led the way with 24 in the game one loss at TD Garden as Miami outscored Boston 44-24 in the paint, but it was a different story from downtown.

The visitors made 12-of-37 from beyond the arc and took just six trips to the free throw line as Boston managed their physicality.

The lopsided score, lack of trips to the line and poor three-point shooting all feed into angles that would tell you to back the Heat in game two, but they’re in too precarious a position.

Boston is too well-balanced, with six players including Jayson Tatum scoring double-digits in the first meeting, while the Heat is limited to one main threat which can easily be shut down.



New Orleans Pelicans @ OKC Thunder (0230 BST)

The Oklahoma City Thunder stole it by a single bucket, 94-92, when these two defences slugged it out in a methodical, playoff-type match a few nights ago.

Trey Murphy III and CJ McCollum lead the way for the New Orleans Pelicans with 21 and 20 respectively, while Shai Gilgeous-Alexander dropped 28 for the Thunder.

The total opened at 216.5 for game one, a carefully thought out number on the evidence of the season so far, yet we’re seeing as low as 211 for game two, which seems to be the public overreacting to game one.

These sides looked rusty early on as they drew the opening quarter 17-17 and felt each other out. The scoring picked up, but the defences took over in a tight game in the fourth.

Both of these teams are capable of so much more on offence than they produced in game one and we’d expect both to score in the hundreds on Wednesday.

The Pels have shot well recently so it was surprising to see them shooting under 40%, but it sets them up to bounce back in game two.

The under is 4-6 through 10 meetings between the sides, yet we’ve seen totals as high as 238 and 223 in regular-season meetings. 

The teams have combined for 216 points per game in those contests and we expect a much more energetic, rust-free offensive showing in game two.



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