NBA Spread Picks: Toronto Raptors vs Miami Heat
Will The Heat Scorch The Raptors?
Yes, because an injured Kyle Lowry will not play the second of two games in two nights.
The Raptors were in Brooklyn last night, scrapping out a win against the Nets, who pushed the game to overtime. They also clipped Kyle Lowry as he was going up for a rebound in extra time, causing the all-star point guard to crash to the court. His absence will be the main challenge Toronto needs to transcend this evening.
Miami started off the season poorly, requiring a month or so to become accustomed to the new lineup. The Heat started to play more consistent basketball during early December, including an impressive one-point win against the Boston Celtics. Toronto will be challenged by the Heat, who’ve overcome their own injury issues recently.
Raptors Betting Picks:
NBA Odds Courtesy Of Sports Interaction
Point Spread – Miami Heat +4.0 (-110)
Straight Up Moneyline – Heat +150
Over/Under Totals – Under 208.0 (-110)
Toronto Raptors Betting Trends Against Miami Heat
Raptors Without Kyle Lowry
After crashing to the hardcourt in overtime against the Nets, Kyle Lowry will be out of the lineup on a day-to-day basis. Luckily for the Raptors, his crash looked more serious than the diagnosis of a bruised tailbone. This injury does arrive at a tough time, with the Raps playing on less than 24 hours rest. With the Cavaliers and the Warriors arriving in Toronto on Thursday and Saturday, Toronto hopes that the bruise heals quickly so they can challenge these elite teams at full power.
Lack Of Rest Impacts Toronto’s Performance
Toronto’s managed to earn a .500 record for the second game when playing on consecutive nights, although they lost their last two in this situation while on the road in Oklahoma and against the Clippers. Last night was a punishing matchup that stretched into extra time. The Raptors needed every minute, clutching out a one-point win because of another fantastic performance from DeMar DeRozan. The Heat will have a significant rest advantage, even if they’re facing Toronto at the ACC, where the Raps are 14-1 - best in the NBA.
Miami Heat’s Balanced Scoring
Dion Waiters will need a few more games to heal before returning to the lineup, but the Heat have replaced his production by focusing on scoring by committee. Eight different Miami players average more than ten points a game, lead by veteran point guard Goran Dragic, who scores 16.7 PPG and contributes 4.8 PPG. Without Waiters and Winslow, the Heat don’t enjoy the same level of team production. However, without Kyle Lowry in the lineup, Toronto won’t have a huge offensive advantage over Miami.
Heat Get It Done With Defense
The Heat allow the second least amount of points per game in the NBA, giving up only 102.2 per match. The Raptors give up the 11th most points, allowing 104.2 PPG, more than making up the difference with their 3rd-ranked offense, which averages 112.1 PPG. When Miami plays with discipline, Hassan Whiteside, Goran Dragic, James Johnson and Josh Richardson can lock down most NBA offensive schemes. Since they won’t be dealing with Lowry tonight, coach Erik Spoelstra will devise a way to add extra coverage against DeRozan.
Toronto Tends To Play Well Against Miami
Miami’s won only two of their last ten regular season games against the Toronto Raptors, including a heartbreaking 96-94 defeat which helped to eliminate the Heat from last year’s playoffs, despite an amazing run during the last half of the season. The Raptors would be big favorites if Lowry was in the lineup. Instead, the spread rests at -4 on behalf of Toronto. Miami will have a great chance to win this evening because the Raps will be tired and injured.
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