Heat favored in Game 1 of NBA Finals

The Miami Heat are favored on the NBA betting lines at the sportsbooks for Thursday night as they prepare to take on the San Antonio Spurs in the opener of the 2013 NBA Finals.

The Spurs are well rested for the NBA Finals, as they swept the Memphis Grizzlies in four games in the Western Conference Finals. The Heat, on the other hand, needed the full seven games to get past the Indiana Pacers in the Eastern bracket.

The Heat have won four straight overall against San Antonio, but the majority of bettors (62% as of Thursday morning according to our consensus betting data) were on the Spurs at +5 or +5.5.

And maybe that lean is deserved. The Spurs have won and covered three straight as an underdog are are 6-1 SU and ATS as a dog of less than 6 points.

The Spurs will look to vanquish their hosts on Thursday, as they are 39-41-2 ATS versus the spread this season, while the Heat are 46-36 ATS. San Antonio is 36-45-1 against the total, while Miami is 43-39 versus the number. (Note: follow us on Twitter for line updates and injuries news).

View San Antonio vs Miami Odds and Stats.

Betting Line:
Miami opened as 5.5-point favorites at online sportsbook Bovada, while the NBA total was sitting around 187.5 at for those who prefer OVER/UNDER betting.

Power Rankings / Prediction:
This game pits the Heat, currently No. 6 in the Odds Shark NBA Power Rankings, against the Spurs, who rate No. 3 in the most recent survey. Meanwhile, math and computer handicapping models run on this game predict a 107-106 victory for the Heat.


How They Match Up:
In rebounding, the battle of the boards features Miami's No. 30-rated squad against San Antonio's No. 21-rated roster. When it comes to long-range shooting, Miami rates No. 3 in the league with 8.7 per game, while their foes tonight rank No. 7 with 8.1 per outing.

In comparing how the teams stack up statistically, the Spurs own the league's No. 12-rated mark, allowing 98.9 points per game when playing on the road. Miami, on the other hand, rates No. 4 in scoring on their home court.

San Antonio won its last outing, a 93-86 result against the Grizzlies on May 27. The Spurs covered in that game as a 2.5-point underdog, while the 179 combined points took the game UNDER the total. Tony Parker poured in 37 points for San Antonio on Monday, as they defeated Memphis 93-86 at FedExForum.

The Heat were a 99-76 winner in their most recent outing at home against the Pacers. They covered the 7-point spread as favorites, while the total score (175) made winners of UNDER bettors. Indiana was run off the court by the Heat on Monday as Miami blasted the Pacers 99-76 at AmericanAirlines Arena.

San Antonio Spurs Trends:
When playing on Thursday are 8-2
Before playing Miami are 10-0
After playing Memphis are 10-0
After a win are 8-2

Miami Heat Trends:
When playing on Thursday are 5-5
Before playing San Antonio are 6-4
After playing Indiana are 6-4
After a win are 6-4

A few Spurs at Heat trends to consider:
San Antonio is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games
San Antonio is 6-1 SU in its last 7 games on the road
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of San Antonio's last 6 games on the road
The total has gone UNDER in 14 of San Antonio's last 17 games when playing on the road against Miami
Miami is 22-3 SU in its last 25 games at home
Miami is 20-4 SU in its last 24 games
The total has gone UNDER in 14 of Miami's last 17 games when playing at home against San Antonio
Miami is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games when playing San Antonio

Next up:
San Antonio at Miami, Sunday, June 9
Miami home to San Antonio, Sunday, June 9