By Charles Jay
NBA bettors are aware that the San Antonio Spurs aren’t going to have any excuses if they can’t reverse last year’s very heart-breaking result against the Miami Heat in the NBA Finals. They are perfectly positioned to gain their fifth world championship, since they are going to have the home court edge, which the Heat had last season when these two teams met in one of the most thrilling championship series ever.
This means one thing – holding serve at home. That is easier said than done, because we know that Miami is a very good team at bouncing back after a defeat. By the same token, we also know that San Antonio is the team that had the best road record in the NBA this season.
Or will the home court matter all that much? We are going to find out, because both of these teams are rested; they are deep and cohesive and probably don’t mind getting out there and running a little. They will meet in Game 1 of this series, which matches teams that absolutely proved to be the best in their respective conferences, with tip-off at 9 PM ET at the AT&T Center.
In the NBA betting odds that have been posted on this game by the folks at VietBet, the Spurs are the favorites:
San Antonio Spurs -4.5
Miami Heat +4.5
Over 198.5 Points -110
Under 198.5 Points -110
If you remember game 1 of Miami’s Eastern Conference finals series against Indiana, you noticed that the ball movement of the Pacers, when they were really on their game, gave the Heat a real headache. That is the kind of thing the Spurs do all the time. When they are on the floor, there are usually at least four players who are dangerous scorers. And when they started Matt Bonner alongside Tim Duncan in Game 5 of the series with Oklahoma City, they had a lot of ability to stretch the defense. NBA bettors know that when you put something in you will usually lose something, and the smaller and quicker either of these teams get, they will lose something in terms of size. Will Chris Bosh have to guard Duncan? And what can Duncan do with that?
The Spurs are a -145 favorite at VietBet to win the series, and if they are going to beat the Heat they are going to have to get a lot of quality time out of Tony Parker, the point guard who had a bad ankle which kept him out of Game 6 against Oklahoma City. As any basketball bettors who have seen the Spurs can attest, when he is able to penetrate and open things up for some of the great outside shooters on this team, whether it’s Manu Ginobili or Danny Green or Bonner or Marco Belinelli, this team becomes almost impossible to defend.
The biggest challenge facing the Spurs is dealing with LeBron James. You can say what you want about the other members of the “Big Three,” when James is off this team is going to be off, because he dominates the ball. When he had foul trouble against the Pacers in Game 5, VietBet patrons watching that game saw that the Heat was not able to function at a high level offensively. One thing San Antonio has been able to do with some success is to focus in on the opponent’s big offensive gun and neutralize him to some extent for much of the time. That happened with Dirk Nowitzki, LaMarcus Aldridge, and to varying degrees, Kevin Durant. So it is safe to say that Kawhi Leonard, the small forward who was named to the league’s All-Defensive team, with have a big assignment on his hands.
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