Submitted by Jim Hurley on Tuesday, June 18, 2013 at 7:00 AM
The Miami Heat are still series favorites in the NBA Finals that will conclude either Tuesday or Thursday in South Beach. Though they trail 3-2, they will have home court advantage in both games if they can take things the distance. Miami is a 7-point favorite in Game Six as we write this up for you…and will be within a point or two of that in a Game Seven finale.
The problems with assuming that 7-point favorites always win include:
*Miami already has a home loss in this series on this floor.
*Miami lost at home in the prior rounds to Indiana and Chicago as well.
*Miami hasn’t played two great games in a row in a long time!
*San Antonio has always been able to win on the road with this coach/veteran combo
*The refs have shown they won’t favor the Heat, as Miami has yet to earn more FT’s in a game
Obviously Miami has greatness in them. We saw that in Games Two and Four. What’s clear now is that the Heat MUST play great in order to win. San Antonio isn’t going to disappear. San Antonio is a lot more than a “big three” based on what’s been happening with three-point shooting and team defense. Miami must find that extra gear for two games in a row, or they’ll be taken out by a Texas team for the second time in three seasons.
SAN ANTONIO at MIAMI
Vegas Line: Miami by 7, total of 191
San Antonio Leads 3-2
The market is respecting the zig zag, because Miami’s been alternating wins and losses for two series now. What’s interesting is how little the pointspread has mattered in this series. None of the games are close to the number! Either one team exceeds expectations by a mile, or the other one does. Miami is 2-3 against the number. If Miami had been -15 in every game, they’d still be 2-3 against the number.
The Over/Under has risen because referees are calling more fouls within a context of faster tempos. Look at the scoring sequence so far: 180-187-190-202-218. That’s the opposite of what’s supposed to happen in a championship round. We may be due for a correction if things bog down when every possession because huge (more likely in a Game Seven than a Game Six). If each team continues to attack quickly because scoring against a set defense is tough…then the market may still be underestimating a new expectation. Game Five went Over by almost 30 points.
Average Result: San Antonio by 3
Average Total: 195.4
Five games in, and the Spurs are up by 15 points on the scoreboard. If the Heat can win Game Six by at least 15 points, then they’ll have established neutralized equality (or superiority) with three games at each site.
On one hand, this has been a tricky series for handicappers because there’s been so much inconsistency. On the other…the inconsistency has followed such an exact path that simply playing the zig zag would win every time! Will the pattern continue Tuesday with an easy Miami win? Or, are the Spurs playing with such confidence now that they’ll be able to put the game out of reach with more great three-point shooting?
You can’t make a math case that Miami should be laying this many points at home. Home floor is only worth 2-3 points this deep in a series. Yet, the see-saw has been so extreme that seven points is nothing if one team is playing at its peak while the other isn’t. The math in Vegas has missed the actual scoreboard by at least nine points in every game.
JIM HURLEY knows you want to win big in Game Six. He’s been working closely with his scouts, his sources, his statheads, his computer programmers, and his Wise Guy connections in Vegas and offshore to determine the right side and total for his clients. You can purchase the final word during the day Tuesday in the hours before tipoff right here at the website. Be sure to check out baseball too. We have some BIG series this week with LA Dodgers/NY Yankees, Tampa Bay/Boston, Oakland/Texas, and Pittsburgh/Cincinnati.
If you have any questions about service, call us in the office at 1-800-323-4453. This is a great time to check on early bird football programs!
Back Wednesday with what will probably be a game preview for Dodgers/Yankees, as that’s the national TV game on ESPN. So much history in that matchup…and the Dodgers manager is a Yankees legend!
For now…the focus is on the NBA Championship…which could be determined Tuesday Night. When championships are on the line, YOU NEED WORLD CHAMPION HANDICAPPER JIM HURLEY!