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Miami Heat vs. Indiana Pacers Cappers Tuesday NBA Preview & Free Pick

Heat vs Pacers NBA Handicapping

The Knicks have hit a road bump. The rest of the Eastern Conference? Meh.

So it’s hardly a concern for Miami when the Heat don’t draw rave reviews, especially on the road. Miami is just 7-6 away from South Florida this season, and when the resume includes losses at Detroit and Washington, it’s a pretty good sign that the team has collective attention deficit disorder on occasion. .

Miami Heat (23-9) at Indiana Pacers (20-4)
Tuesday, Jan. 8
Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Indianapolis
7 p.m. EST
Spread – Heat -3
O/U – 187 at SportsBettingOnline.ag

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that brings us to tonight’s game in the Midwest, against a decent team with no real stars in a venue that’s aptly named (Bankers Life Fieldhouse). It’s everything that Miami’s Big Three (James, Wade, Bosh) – who live for glitter, girls, limos and entourages – find disgusting.

Tonight’s game might be a harbinger for the Heat as they embark on a 6-game, 10-day road swing that also includes stops in Portland, Sacramento and Utah before they can enjoy the night life in San Francisco (Golden State) and Los Angeles (Lakers).

The Heat have re-arranged the furniture a bit since early in the season, moving Udonis Haslem into the starting lineup and bringing Shane Battier off the bench. It’s enabled the boys to play a little better defense at the start of games as well as address a festering rebounding issue.

Miami has been near the bottom of the league in rebounding (now 29th, of 30) all season, but Haslem’s extended minutes have improved things a bit.

Haslem and Chris Bosh combined for 21 boards in Sunday’s win over the Wizards, though any numbers put up against Washington are suspect.[ad-6571516]

Which brings us the Pacers, who are one of the top rebounding teams in the league and are a tough out when they’re at home. Indy is 12-3 in home games, with seven non-road victories in a row.

They have three starters (Roy Hibbert, David West, Paul George) who average more than seven boards a game, and when they keep games in the 80s they usually win.

Indiana especially likes what it got from Hibbert is its last game (win over Milwaukee). The 7-foot-2 center has been a puzzle for much of the season but scored 20 and pulled down 15 boards against the Bucks. If he repeats that tonight against one of the best teams in the league, the Pacers will breathe a sigh of relief.

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Recall that the Pacers gave the Heat a little grief in the second round of the playoffs last season and even had a 2-1 lead before Miami got serious and tightened the screws defensively in Games 4, 5 and 6.

Question tonight is whether the Heat will go belly button to the wall or go just hard enough to keep it close for three periods and then win it in the fourth quarter.

For Miami it’s just another game; for Indiana it’s a good test to see if the Pacers can be a top-4 team in the East.

Going with Indiana.

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About Lawrence Paul

Lawrence Paul is back in the saddle as a regular contributor to the Cappers Picks Blog. He's got an AMAZING knack for predicting when a team will have a letdown! Stick with our resident gambling experts sports betting tips all season long!


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