Celtics vs. Heat NBA Prediction – Tuesday, May 17, 2022

| May 16, 2022 8:23 am PDT

We’ve reached the Conference Finals in the 2022 NBA playoffs. There isn’t much of a surprise in the Eastern Conference as the No. 1 seed Miami Heat will take on the No. 2 seed Boston Celtics.

Miami will host Game 1 after finishing with the best record in the Eastern Conference. The Celtics won the regular-season series 2-1. Can they keep it up, or will the Heat make their second NBA Finals in three seasons?

The sportsbooks are all over this matchup. Let’s see what they have in mind.

Celtics vs. Heat Odds for May 17th

Sportsbook Boston Celtics Miami Heat Bonus Offered Visit Site
Bovada (+2.0) (-110) (-2.0) (-110) 50% up to $250 Visit Bovada
BetUS (+2.0) (-110) (-2.0) (-110) 125% up to $2,500 Visit BetUS
MyBookie (+2.0) (-110) (-2.0) (-110) 100% up to $1,000 Visit MyBookie
BetOnline (+2.0) (-108) (-2.0) (-112) 100% up to $1,000 Visit BetOnline

The best NBA sportsbooks aren’t wavering for this matchup. They’re holding serve on the Miami Heat being a two-point favorite. SportsBetting.ag will give you slightly better value for betting on the Boston Celtics.

Following a loss in Game 1 of the Conference Semifinals, the Celtics have covered the spread in four of their last six games. They haven’t lost against the spread on the road in the playoffs.

Miami is 6-1 against the spread at home in the playoffs.

The over/under for this matchup is 205.5 to 206 points. Miami has gone over twice in 11 playoff games. Boston has gone under their point total in seven of 11 playoff games.

Each team is dealing with a significant injury. Robert Williams has only played in five playoff games, but he was available for Game 7. Kyle Lowry likely won’t play as he deals with a hamstring injury.

Celtics vs. Heat Preview

The Boston Celtics and Miami Heat will square off in the Eastern Conference Finals for the second time in three seasons. Miami took care of business during the 2020 Eastern Conference Finals in the bubble.

Some people may have noticed the low point total for this matchup. We expect high-scoring games in the playoffs, but that likely won’t be the case with Miami and Boston.

They had a top-five defense in the regular season. Both teams have kept it up in the postseason.

  Miami Heat Boston Celtics
Points Per Game Allowed 97.5 (1st) 101.8 (3rd)
Defensive Rating 104.6 (2nd) 105.2 (3rd)

Both teams shut down elite offenses in the postseason. Now, they’ll have to outduel each other to make the NBA Finals.

The defenses garner much attention with the Heat and Celtics, but they have multiple offensive playmakers. Jayson Tatum and Jimmy Butler have been two of the best players in the postseason.

Tatum had a clutch performance in Game 6 of the Conference Semifinals. With the Celtics facing elimination, he scored 46 points on 7-15 three-point shooting. Tatum has been special, but I’d say Jimmy Butler has a slight advantage.

  • 28.7 points
  • 7.6 rebounds
  • 5.4 assists
  • 2.1 steals
  • 52.5 field goal percentage
  • 36.4 three-point percentage

Butler has taken his game to another level. He had 45 points in Game 2 of the Conference Quarterfinals against the Atlanta Hawks. He had another 40-point performance against the Philadelphia 76ers.

Both players are among the top contenders for the 2022 NBA Finals MVP.

We’ve seen both teams shine on the defensive end, but can they slow down the opposing star? We could see guys like Tyler Herro, Al Horford, Grant Williams, or Bam Adebayo play a significant factor in Game 1.

Celtics vs. Heat Same Game Parlay

  • Jaylen Brown Over 23.5 Points (+100)
  • Jimmy Butler Under 5.5 Assists (-125)
  • Al Horford Over 8.5 Rebounds (-150)

There are ample betting opportunities in the NBA playoffs. Why not check out my favorite same game parlay for Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals?

Jaylen Brown has taken a backseat to Jayson Tatum in the playoffs. Brown had three 26+ point games in the Conference Semifinals but also had three games with 20 points or less. I expect the Miami Heat to focus on Tatum, giving Brown more opportunities.

Brown only had 17 points in his first matchup against the Heat this season, but he had 29 and 28, respectively, in his last two games. I like the value of him scoring 24+ points.

Jimmy Butler has been a star in the postseason. His assist numbers are on pace with his regular-season total, but he didn’t do much against the Celtics.

  • November 4: 2 assists
  • March 30: 2 assists

Miami needs Butler on his A-game if they want to score a Game 1 victory. He should remain aggressive as a scorer, especially with Kyle Lowry likely missing this game. That approach should keep him under 5.5 assists.

Al Horford has been a significant contributor in the Boston Celtics’ playoff run. His numbers are up from the regular season, including averaging nearly two more rebounds. He had 10+ rebounds in five of his last seven games.

Horford cleared 8.5 rebounds in his last two matchups with Miami. He had 15 rebounds in their most recent regular-season matchup. Horford continues to play significant minutes for Boston. That’ll give him a strong opportunity to clear this projection.

Celtics vs. Heat Pick 

My Pick: Heat -2.0 (-110)Bet on the Heat at Bovada

I’m curious to see if the Miami Heat will be a bit rusty after a four-day layoff, or if the Boston Celtics will be sluggish after a grueling seven-game series. Honestly, I don’t think either will be a significant factor.

Saying that, I like the Heat to pick up a Game 1 victory. Miami has home-court advantage, and their defense has been better. Boston has a better offense, but Miami should do their best to limit Jayson Tatum. If they can do that, they’ll kick off the Eastern Conference Finals with a win.

We continue to ramp up our extensive coverage of the NBA playoffs. Feel free to keep an eye on our NBA picks page for more breakdowns and predictions.

Nicholas Sterling
Nicholas Sterling

Nicholas has been a Sports Writer with GamblingSites.com since May 2021. He has a rich sports background, writing about NASCAR, NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, Golf, etc. Nick is always ready for a new challenge.

He enjoys rooting on D.C. sports teams, including the Commanders, Wizards, and Capitals.

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