Los Angeles Clippers vs. Miami Heat Betting Predictions

Clippers vs Heat NBA
Los Angeles vs. Miami, NBA Betting Predictions, February 15

This is the second meeting of the season between the Los Angeles Clippers and the Miami Heat, but the first one lacked a lot of star power. The second game Monday in Los Angeles will also likely lack the same pizzazz as Kawhi Leonard and Paul George both missed Sunday’s game for the Clippers. The only superstar in this game is scheduled to be Jimmy Butler, and he’s got more than enough talent to lead the Heat to a big win.

Clippers vs. Heat Betting Odds

The Los Angeles Clippers are heading into the second game of a six-game homestand after handily defeating the Cavaliers on Sunday night. Their opponent is the Miami Heat, who are in the middle of a seven-game road trip. The Heat had their four-game winning streak snapped in Utah on Saturday, but they will be the fresher team and healthier team at the very least when squaring off with the Clippers on Monday. Los Angeles was missing both Paul George and Kawhi Leonard in Sunday’s win, and their statuses for Monday’s game is in doubt.

Miami will be without Goran Dragic for the contest, but Jimmy Butler has retuned to the lineup for the Heat, and he has made a massive difference. Neither he nor Dragic played last month when the Clippers visited Miami and came home with a four-point victory, and it’s hard not to assume Butler is at least a four-point difference. Butler has averaged 21.6 points, 8.5 rebounds and 8.1 assists per game in eight contests since returning from injury, and he’s a large reason the Heat have become more consistent recently. Tyler Herro led the way with 19 points when these two teams last met, but it seems unlikely he’ll carry as much of the scoring burden in this matchup.

The question for the Clippers is how will they perform without George or Leonard if required. Neither of them played in Miami and five different players scored in double figures and no one scored more than 18 points. Lou Williams is also a danger to go off like he did Sunday when he scored 30 points, and Serge Ibaka and Marcus Morris are both capable scorers as well. But the Heat defense, especially with Butler in the mix, is always strong and Miami leads the league in fewest 2-pointers made and ranks third in total field goals allowed overall. Los Angeles won’t have to worry about its own defense as much as Miami has struggled to score most of the season and scored less than 110 points in four straight games and five of its last six. Yet scoring will be at a premium without their superstars against a Heat team that has kept three of their last five opponents to less than 100 points and allowed just two opponents to score 110 points or more in regulation over their last 11 games.

The Clippers are 5.5-point favorites at the basketball betting sites in New Jersey, but my feeling is that this assumes that Los Angeles will be fully healthy for this game. Leonard might very well be back for Monday’s game, but he missed Sunday’s with a lower leg injury, and there wasn’t much of an update on his condition or that of Paul George, who missed his fifth straight game. I’m working under the assumption that neither will be able to go Monday, so that leaves Miami as more of the favorites in my mind. I’m also a big fan of the +194 odds for the Heat to win on the moneyline as opposed to the -110 odds on the spread from the NBA betting sites in New Jersey.

My Prediction

Miami Moneyline

When these two teams met in Miami last month, the Clippers nor the Heat had their two best players. Los Angeles’ depth won the day by four points, but Jimmy Butler is back in action for Miami and that is enough to overcome the difference to lift the Heat to a road win.

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Josh Walfish is an award-winning journalist who has been covering college and professional sports in the United States. He holds a journalism degree from Northwestern University and his work has appeared in the Miami Herald, Chicago Sun-Times and Providence Journal. He most recently chronicled the UMass hockey teams rise to prominence over the last two years for the local newspaper

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