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Heat Bulls Betting – Defense And Home Court Powers Bulls To NBA Finals

Posted by Craig Parsons on 2/6/2014 9:41:17 PM

Once Miami got past Boston, online betting players started laying wagers on their chances against Chicago, the top overall seed in the postseason. The two tipped off their Eastern Conference final on Sunday, with the Bulls gaining the upper hand, and while Miami will improve throughout the series, we’re betting on the Bulls to make it back to the Finals for the first time since the Michael Jordan era.

  • What: NBA Betting
  • When: Game 2 is on Tuesday, May 17th
  • Where: Games 1,2,5,7 (United Center, Chicago); Games 3,4,6 (American Airlines Arena, Miami)
  • Pick: Chicago Bulls

Why Bet On Miami Heat

The Heat are going to play better than they did in Game 1, when they were thumped by 21 points in Chicago on Sunday, and they always have a chance with LeBron James and Dwyane Wade, two of the top five players in the league, on the same team. In the regular season, James and Wade were the highest-scoring duo in the NBA, and currently in the playoffs, they only trail Oklahoma City’s Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook. They also got some help from Chris Bosh in the Boston series, after his nerves got the better of him early on, and he was their best player in the Game 1 loss against the Bulls, putting up 30 points and nine boards. The Heat play tough team defense, and they realize they have to as they don’t get much scoring outside of their Big Three. Again, it starts with James and Wade on the perimeter as they hound the best players on the other team, and both also hit the glass as well. Joel Anthony will have to play a big role in this series as the Bulls have an advantage in the post, and the Heat need him to take up room in the paint, where Derrick Rose will try to get to every time.

However, Game 1 exposed a lot of problems for the Heat, mainly on the boards where they were outrebounded by 12, and 19-6 on the offensive glass. They’re also extremely dependent on their Big Three and if one of them struggles like James did in Game 1, the Heat have trouble making up the points elsewhere and you know if James gets going, Bosh isn’t going to score 30 points again. Their bench was outplayed badly by their Chicago counterparts, and they have seven more turnovers than the Bulls. Finally, things started to go wrong for the Heat in the second half, and they revered back to isolation basketball, and that won’t beat the Bulls.

Why Bet On Chicago Bulls

NBA betting players watched Chicago play subpar through the first two rounds of the playoffs, barely getting out of second gear to beat Indiana and Atlanta. They flexed their muscles in the second half against the Heat, outscoring Miami 55-34, and a number of things happened: the Bulls stopped turning the ball over (only one after the break), continued to hit the glass, and the bench, particularly Taj Gibson, caught fire. But the Bulls have a major advantage up front with Joakim Noah and Carlos Boozer, who combined to snag 23 boards, and Luol Deng and Gibson both had seven boards apiece. The Bulls can really take control of this series if they continue to clear the glass as they have. And don’t forget, the Bulls have MVP Derrick Rose, who apologized to his teammates for turning the ball over so much in the first half, and that was the catalyst for the team’s surge after the break. Unlike the Heat, who have to share the responsibilities between James and Wade, the Bulls are Rose’s team, which puts a lot of pressure on the 22-year-old, but he has handled it extremely well, especially for being in his hometown. Gibson was the surprise of Game 1 with a pair of big dunks that got the crowd into it, and for being a player that is known for his defensive contributions, he really helped the second unit with his scoring.

The Bulls aren’t a great shooting team from the outside, hitting 34.9% of their three-point attempts, and their lone threats are Kyle Korver and Keith Bogans. This makes it tough for the Bulls to make up points if they dig themselves a deep hole, but they just don’t dig those holes. Also, Deng is their best scoring option outside of Rose as Boozer doesn’t seem to be fully recovered from his toe injury, and if he’s not hitting his shots, that puts even more pressure on Rose. The Bulls need someone other than Rose to score, or else they’ll end up watching the NBA Finals at home.

How The Series Will Play Out

The Bulls are -130 NBA betting favorites to win the Eastern Conference finals after Game 1, while the Heat are rated at +110, and there isn’t much between these two teams. But where the difference lies in this series is coaching, and the Bulls have a big advantage with Coach of the Year Tom Thibodeau over Miami counterpart Erik Spoelstra, and that’s not a knock on Spoelstra, who did as well as he could while guiding the most magnified team in the NBA. But Thibodeau has molded the Bulls into a defensive juggernaut, and that’s no surprise as he was one of the best defensive minds while coaching under Doc Rivers in Boston.

Remember, those Boston teams gave James and Wade all sorts of trouble, and he can come up with all sorts of schemes to contain them. The Bulls did a great job in Game 1, and while we think James and Wade will have their moments (especially when the series switches over to Miami), overall Chicago should do a decent job on those two. Also, the Bulls are outstanding at the United Center, and having homecourt advantage makes a massive difference. Take Chicago in your sports betting picks.

Heat Bulls Betting Pick: Chicago Bulls


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