Celtics vs Heat First Round Preview

NBA Playoffs 2024: Celtics vs Heat First Round Preview, Betting Odds

The Boston Celtics path to their 18th NBA Championship begins with a first round matchup against the Miami Heat. The top-seeded Celtics, led by Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, are a dominant 64-win squad, leading many analysts and fans alike to believe this series will be a walk in the park. However, the gritty Heat can't be counted out.

Let's dive into all the latest Celtics vs Heat NBA playoff series odds and my best bets.

2024 NBA Playoff Previews

(Related Link) NBA Playoff Betting History: Key Trends, Tips

Boston Celtics vs Miami Heat Series Winner Odds

Boston Celtics-8000
Miami Heat+1800

At these prices, there no value on the hugely favored Celtics.

These teams have famously scuffled in three of the past four Eastern Conference Finals. Miami emerged victorious in both 2020 and 2023. However, "Playoff" Jimmy Butler went ballistic in both series. The Big Face Coffee founder injured his MCL in last Wednesday play-in loss to the Philadelphia 76ers and will reportedly miss multiple weeks.

Any wager on the Heat is purely speculative at this point. Miami is both out-manned and outgunned heading into their fourth round of battle with Boston over the last five years.

Boston Celtics vs Miami Heat Hub

Celtics vs Heat Series Schedule

GameDateTime (ET)Arena
Game 1April 21, 20241 p.m.TD Garden
Game 2April 24, 20247 p.m.TD Garden
Game 3April 27, 20246 p.m.Kaseya Center
Game 4April 29, 2024TBDKaseya Center
Game 5 (If Necessary)May 1, 2024TBDTD Garden
Game 6 (If Necessary)May 3, 2024TBDKaseya Center
Game 7 (If Necessary)May 5, 2024TBDTD Garden


Boston Celtics vs Miami Heat Series Total Games Odds

Total GamesOdds
4 Games-110
5 Games+175
6 Games+600
7 Games+1100

It's no surprise sportsbooks have this iteration of the Celtics-Heat seven game series finishing in four games.

Boston holds a massive edge in every major statistical category. Miami has a tall hill to climb to pull out even one victory in this series.

Boston Celtics vs Miami Heat Series Prediction Odds

Series OutcomeOdds
Boston Celtics 4-0-110
Boston Celtics 4-1+180
Boston Celtics 4-2+650
Boston Celtics 4-3+1200
Miami Heat 4-0+28000
Miami Heat 4-1+15000
Miami Heat 4-2+5000
Miami Heat 4-3+8500

Boston is a massive favorite in this series for good reason. Miami's "Heat Culture" will only go so far against the younger, far more talented Celtics. Expect this series to be over quickly.

Boston Celtics vs Miami Heat 2023-24 Spread and Total Betting History

DateSpread & Score ResultTotal Points & Result
October 27, 2023Miami 111 @ Boston 119 (-8.5)   Heat CoverO/U 217.5  (243 OVER)
January 25, 2024Boston (-8) 143 @ Miami 110 Celtics CoverO/U 225.5 (253 OVER)
February 11, 2024Boston (-8.5) 110 @ Miami 106 Heat CoverO/U 225 (216 OVER)

Tread carefully here. The "Zombie Heat" received that moniker for good reason. Even without the services of Jimmy Butler, Miami's formidable defense gives nothing away. Erik Spoeltra has led his Heat to a 7-3 ATS record in his last 10 games against the Celtics.

The UNDER smacked in 48 of Miami's 82 games this season.

Boston Celtics vs Miami Heat Player To Watch: Kristaps Porzingis


The Heat lead the league in percentage of zone defense played (13.4%).

Kristaps is Boston's answer to Erik Spoelstra's defensive conundrum. Joey Mazz's squad floundered against the Heat's zone down the stretch in last season's Eastern Conference Finals. But, the 7-foot-2 Latvian can simply shoot over the top of Miami's zone.

Boston Celtics vs Miami Heat Odds To Win Eastern Conference

TeamOdds To Win East
Boston Celtics-230
Miami Heat+8000

Boston's insane -230 odds to win the Eastern Conference imply a 69.7% chance of the Celtics competing in yet another NBA Finals according to our odds calculator.

However, it's impossible to trust any team at those odds. The health of say a Jayson Tatum or Kristaps Porzingis injury could sway the landscape of the Eastern Conference playoffs significantly.

Odds To Win NBA Championship

TeamOdds To Win NBA Finals
Boston Celtics+120
Miami Heat+24000

The Celtics ranked in the top two in both offense and defense this season and finished with a top-5 point differential in NBA history. Plus, the gap between the Celtics +11.7 points per 100 possession mark and the Oklahoma City Thunder's +7.3 is the fourth largest ever between the top two teams.

There are far worse bets than backing the Celtics to finally clear the proverbial hunt and lift the Larry O'Brien Trophy at +120 odds.

Expert Prediction: Boston Celtics to Win Series 4-0 (-110)

On top of all of the above, the Celtic led the NBA in bench net rating at +6.2 per 100 possessions. That's the highest mark of any team in 28 seasons of data.

Boston's better on both ends of the court, and have the depth and scoring ability to end this series quickly. This isn't last year's Celtics. Adding Kristaps and Jrue Holiday, who just had the most efficient scoring season of his career, puts the Celtics over the top.

Without Jimmy Butler to rally the troops, Miami will falter. Celtics in four.

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