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Milwaukee Bucks vs. Miami Heat NBA Picks (Jan. 4)

NBA Betting – Bucks vs Heat Preview & Pick

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NBA Betting – Bucks vs Heat Preview & Pick

Date: Tuesday, January 4, 2011
Venue: American Airlines Arena, Miami, FL
Broadcast: FSWI, SUN
Milwaukee Bucks at Miami Heat Betting Lines from Betus.com
Money Line: Bucks +450, Heat -600
Spread: Heat -10
Over/Under: 183
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Milwaukee Bucks (13-18)

After winning 46 games last season and adding Corey Maggette for secondary scoring in the offseason, the Milwaukee Bucks have to be extremely disappointed with their 13-18 start. Defensively, they’ve been solid, ranking fourth in the league with just 92.5 points per game. But they’re dead last in the Association in offense, averaging a measly 90.6 points per contest.

Injuries have been the main reason for Milwaukee’s struggles. Michael Redd is out at least another month with a knee injury; Carlos Delfino’s concussion has kept him out since mid-December; leading scorer Brandon Jennings has missed six games with a broken foot and isn’t expected back for a few more weeks; and Drew Gooden (foot) won’t play tonight. That means the Bucks will have to hope John Salmons, Andrew Bogut and Corey Maggette can do all the scoring against the Heat.

Miami Heat (27-9)

To say the Heat have hit their stride after a nasty start to 2010-11 is an understatement. They’re 18-1 in their last 19 games. Only twice during that span have they allowed 100 or more points. LeBron James and Dwyane Wade have found their yin and yang, averaging 24.8 and 24.7 points per game, respectively. Chris Bosh has settled nicely into his No. 3 role, averaging 18.4 points and eight boards.

But the most impressive aspect to Miami’s game this season is its defense. The Heat allow the third-fewest points per game and hold opponents to the lowest field-goal percentage and three-point percentage. Even their fans get in on the act; Miami also has the lowest opposing free-throw percentage in the league.

Often, powerhouse teams aren’t great bets against the spread in basketball because oddsmakers overvalue them. That was true about Miami earlier this year but the Heat have exceeded expectations in betting circles of late, going 13-6 ATS over their dominant 18-1 straight-up stretch.

The pick:

I know Milwaukee beat the Mavericks last week and the Lakers the week before that but, still, 10 points feels like a small spread tonight. The Bucks are absolutely reeling with injuries. The Heat are healthy aside from Udonis Haslem (a.k.a. someone not part of the Big Three). They also beat the Lakers by 16 points in Los Angeles on Christmas Day. Are you telling me the NBA’s hottest team can’t beat Milwaukee by more than 10 at home tonight?

Bucks vs Heat prediction: Heat 104, Bucks 92

Money Line: Heat -600
Spread: Heat -10
Over/Under: OVER 183

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About Shea Matthews

Shea Matthews the Senior Writer at CP. Lives and breathes sports. He made the transition from athlete to sports journalist at a young age, writing in TV & national papers. Shea applies his knowledge to sports betting + handicapping daily, and shares winning picks with the world.


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