Indiana Pacers at Miami Heat Pick

December 27, 8:00 PM EST

Betting Odds

Point Spread: 
Miami -5

The Indiana Pacers (21-10) and the Miami Heat (22-8) will square off at the American Airlines Arena in Miami, Florida, for their first meeting of the 2019-20 season. Tip-off is scheduled for 8:00 PM ET and will be broadcasted on FSN. The Pacers and Heat last met in February in Miami when the Heat played hosts. Closing as a 2.5-point favorite, the Heat were upset in a defensive battle when the Pacers emerged triumphant by a score of 95-88. The Pacers have won and covered in the last four meetings.

Indiana Pacers at Miami Heat Injury Concerns

The most notable injury concern rests with the Indiana Pacers camp as Point Guard Malcolm Brogdon is listed as questionable heading into this high-profile Eastern Conference clash as he deals with a sore left hamstring.

Indiana Pacers at Miami Heat Overview

Indiana Pacers

The Pacers step into this contest off a home win on Monday against the visiting Toronto Raptors. Closing as a 5.5-point favorite, Indiana narrowly failed to cover in a 120-115 victory that required overtime to declare a winner.

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Miami Heat

The Heat come into this contest off of hard-fought win attained against the upset-minded Utah Jazz on Monday. Closing as a 4.5-point favorite, the Heat scraped by the Jazz 107-104 and also failed to cover as a result.

Reasons To Back Indiana

In terms of defensive mastery, the Pacers have seemingly picked up right where they left off in the 2018-2019 campaign as they bode the best defense in the league, giving up 104.7 points per match. The Pacers have all the ingredients to match-up well with the Heat as the two sides are more or less comparable in terms of field goal percentage (47.2% for Miami and 47.5% for Indiana) which means the Pacers have an opportunity to undermine Miami's stronger offense with sound defense complemented by smart shot selection. Given the fact Indiana plays .500 ball on the road (7-7 SU), the Pacers also are adept in overcoming the rigors of playing in hostile environments. Moreover, Indiana has an emotional edge in this game, given its recent dominance in this series. For these reasons, Indiana can be a tough out for Miami, and I like them here working with free points.

Reasons To Avoid Miami

On the season, the Heat are 13-1 SU at home. This narrative in itself will cause many takers to place too much stock in the Heat in this spot. Even if Indiana has had their number. This could be especially the case considering Miami is an equally impressive 11-3 ATS in home matches. Miami’s one loss at home this season is also one that the market will forgive since it came against the Los Angeles Lakers and was settled by a three-pointer where the Heat covered. This result only bolsters the Heat’s appeal. However, there are a lot of misnomers to Miami’s “home court advantage”. Many of Miami’s recent win and covers were earned against bottom-feeders like the New York Knicks, the Atlanta Hawks, and the Washington Wizards.

Furthermore, we have seen this team come out on the winning side of the equation despite being taken to overtime in two of their last four home victories by the aforementioned Hawks and the Bulls. Incidentally, these teams do not fare well on the road as they have won nine games in total away from their respective steads. Yet, both sides were in a position to stage a potential upset in Miami. The Pacers are a step up in competitive quality by contrast and cannot only challenge the Heat but beat them outright.

Pacers at Heat Prediction 12/27/10

The Pacers know they can win in Miami as they did so in February so they won't even bat an eye at the sparkling Miami record on its own court. Indiana will roll up their sleeves and turn this into a game of possessions. The Heat will have to work hard for a win here, and given the defensive connotation that this game has to offer, I will take the points that do come with Indiana.

Free Pick: 
Take Indiana +5

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