NBA Eastern Conference Finals Game 1 Best Bets: Boston Celtics at Miami Heat

Marcus Smart, Boston Celtics

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While Jimmy Butler and the Miami Heat have had a few days off since taking out the Philadelphia 76ers, the Celtics only finished their seven-game series on Sunday. With Marcus Smart considered questionable for tonight's contest, the Celtics could struggle to steal Game 1 on the road against the Heat.

Tonight, Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown head to Miami to play Game 1 of a highly anticipated Eastern Conference series against the Miami Heat. Let's take a look at today's best bets and player props.

Please note that all odds and lines are from FanDuel Sportsbook and were accurate at 3:30 PM EST. Be sure to check for line movement or odd changes.

Best Bets Of The Night

Though the Heat comfortably won their series against the Philadelphia 76ers 4-2, bad offensive performances in consecutive games contributed to their losses. After eventually squeezing past Joel Embiid and the Sixers with back-to-back victories in Game 5 and Game 6, the Heat could struggle in Game 1 in front of their home fans.

Unfortunately for Miami, Kyle Lowry will be out for Game 1 of this series due to his ongoing hamstring injury. While he’s been able to create plays for the Heat, he has not played efficiently at any point throughout these playoffs. That said, Lowry hasn’t been healthy but Miami's success this postseason has largely been achieved without Lowry running the point. There is some concern for the Boston Celtics that they may be without Marcus Smart for Game 1, which could truly hurt them if that comes to fruition. In Game 7, Smart sustained a foot sprain, forcing the Celtics to list him as questionable yesterday afternoon.

Smart has been instrumental to Boston’s lockdown defense throughout the playoffs. If the Celtics are forced to suit up without Smart in Game 1 despite the return of Robert Williams, Boston will struggle to maintain Miami's top offensive weapons such as Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo, and Tyler Herro. Expect the Heat to take the first game of the Eastern Conference Finals comfortably if the Defensive Player of the Year is sidelined. If Smart is able to suit up, it's anyone's game.

Bet 1: Miami Heat, -2 (-110)

The Boston Celtics have scored at least 100 points in every game this postseason. They aren’t the concern as much as the Heat, who scored an atrocious 79 points against the 76ers in Game 3. Tonight should be a high-scoring affair. Though the Miami Heat conceded two games of their series against the Philadelphia 76ers due to abysmal offense, we know they are capable of scoring big. They put up 119 points in Game 2, and 120 points in Game 5. This could especially be the case if Marcus Smart is out of the Celtics’ rotation, which will hurt Boston’s defense. Even if he does play, he will likely be less efficient on the floor as a result of his foot sprain from Game 7 on Sunday.

Bet 2: Over 204 Total Points (-110)

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NBA Player Props of the Night

Prop #1: Grant Williams Over 8.5 Points

Grant Williams hit seven three-pointers in Game 7 against the Bucks. He attempted a whopping 18 threes, which might be more impressive and unexpected. Ime Udoka has kept him on the floor for big minutes throughout the postseason due to the energy he brings on both sides of the floor. He’s clearly capable of scoring but of also being physical on defense.

Prop #2: Victor Oladipo Over 9.5 Points

With Kyle Lowry out, Victor Oladipo will likely get 25+ minutes on the floor tonight in Game 1. He missed the vast majority of the regular season but returned in March and has been surprisingly efficient. Coach Erik Spoelstra has primarily found Oladipo effective as a ball-handler and scorer throughout the postseason while Lowry has been unhealthy. Oladipo has scored in double-figures in four of the last seven games and will log above-average minutes tonight in Game 1 with Gabe Vincent starting for Kyle Lowry and Dipo coming off the bench for meaningful minutes.

Prop #3: Bam Adebayo 15+ Pts / Miami To Win (+186)
With Marcus Smart at less than 100% healthy even if he is able to suit up tonight, Adebayo should have an easier time producing on the offensive end of the floor against Boston than he did against Milwaukee. Bam struggled once Joel Embiid returned in the previous series but he should have a much easier time going up against Al Horford and Robert Williams. Giannis Antetokounmpo was guarded ferociously by Smart and was frequently double-teamed in the previous series. However, there is no way that Boston will put Smart on Adebayo. Smart will likely match up with Jimmy Butler if he's able to play tonight. Meanwhile, Horford isn't the best defender in the world and Robert Williams is still getting his conditioning back after sitting out the previous few contests. Given the matchup, Adebayo should have a bounce-back game after a somewhat disappointing series against the Sixers. Expect him to grab a few offensive boards for put-back layups. He should drop 15 points tonight while the Heat takes Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals.

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