Celtics-Heat Game 6 betting preview: Miami mired in shooting slump

Issac Baldizon / National Basketball Association / Getty

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The Celtics used a second-half rally Friday to keep their playoff hopes alive, as they now cling to a 3-2 series deficit against the Heat.

Will the series go seven games, or will Miami come through yet again as an underdog to move on to the Finals?

Here's all the betting info you need for Sunday's pivotal Game 6.

Heat vs. Celtics (-3.5, 214)

If the number holds, Boston would close as a 3.5-point favorite for the fourth straight game. The total of 214 would be the highest of the series and a significant adjustment off the Game 1 total of 208.5.

The case for Miami

Who says the team up 3-1 can't play like it's a win-or-go-home scenario? Had it not been for the Celtics' 41-point third quarter Friday, perhaps we'd already be discussing a Heat-Lakers series.

Miami looked like the hungrier team out of the gate in Game 5, racing out to an early eight-point lead. It doesn't take a lot to motivate the Heat, who are 25-8 against the spread following an outright loss and 12-4 ATS after losing by double digits.

An offense that's typically lights-out needs to maneuver through its current slump. Miami went 7-of-36 from beyond the arc in Game 5 and has shot worse than 25% over the last 13 quarters. The Heat were No. 1 in the league in both true shooting percentage and eFG% during the regular season; they'll come around sooner rather than later.

The case for Boston

An offensive explosion could be just what the doctor ordered to get things going for the Celtics. They scored 121 points Friday despite shooting 40% in the first half, getting a combined 59 from Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown. It was Boston's highest output since Game 6 against the Raptors.

Head coach Brad Stevens is still a terrific bet when the Celtics are favorites, as he's currently on a 24-9-1 run against the spread over the last 34.

Notable betting trends

  • Boston is 1-3-1 against the spread the last five Sunday games
  • Boston is 0-4 ATS the last four following an ATS win
  • Boston is 4-1 to the over the last five as playoff favorites
  • Boston is 8-3 to the under the last 11 on one day of rest
  • Boston is 7-3 ATS the last 10 on one day of rest
  • Miami is 1-4 ATS the last five Sunday games
  • Miami is 34-15-2 ATS the last 51 after an ATS loss
  • Miami is 4-1 to the over the last five after a double-digit loss
  • Miami is 4-1 to the over the last five overall

(Odds source: theScore Bet)

Alex Kolodziej is a betting writer for theScore. He's a graduate of Eastern Illinois who has been involved in the sports betting industry for 12 years. He can quote every line from "Rounders" and appreciates franchises that regularly wear alternate jerseys. Find him on Twitter @AJKolodziej.

Celtics-Heat Game 6 betting preview: Miami mired in shooting slump
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