Today’s Plays Include a (+264) NBA Playoffs Parlay

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The NBA playoffs continue tonight. Let’s make some extra money with a parlay.

Top sportsbooks have released their betting odds for tonight’s NBA playoff action. One game is being played tonight — Boston vs. Miami — and it is worth investing in it heavily.

I will explain why you should play both spread and total for this game. Feel free to parlay both bets at an online sports betting site to maximize your profit.

Boston Celtics vs. Miami Heat

Tuesday, May 17, 2022 – 08:30 PM EDT at FTX Arena 

Why We Should Forget About 2020?

This series presents a rematch of the 2020 Eastern Conference Finals in which Miami triumphed over Boston.

While it might be tempting to refer back to that series as a sort of cheat sheet, it should be emphasized that both teams are radically different -- in a good way -- from 2020.

Miami has lost one of its top scorers (Goran Dragic) from that series and hardly plays another one (Duncan Robinson). 

Meanwhile, the Heat have much more depth and quality on their roster. As for the Celtics, most especially their frontcourt looks completely different.

Are the Celtics Switching?

Of course, Boston also has a new head coach in Ime Udoka.

  • One thing that Udoka loves to do is switch on defense.
  • The Celtics have switched on a higher rate of ball screens than any other playoff team this year.
  • A solid opposing point guard poses a threat to the Celtic defense by setting up his teammates for advantageous mismatches, which a switch-heavy defense is particularly vulnerable to.

For Miami, Kyle Lowry is such a point guard. His IQ and abilities as a distributor allowed him to rank 10th during the regular season in accruing 7.5 assists per game.

However, Lowry has been ruled 'out' for Game 1 as a result of his injured hamstring. Offensively, Miami will miss Lowry's presence also because Lowry's backups do not replicate his abilities. 

Bam Adebayo and Tyler Herro

While Lowry won't be on the court as someone Miami can run the offense through, Bam Adebayo will be.

On March 30, Adebayo helped Miami beat Boston 106-98.  In that game, the Heat ran their offense through Adebayo by positioning him on the high post.

Adebayo sliced the Celtic defense with eight assists, thus overmatching Celtic centers. However, know for your NBA picks that Boston did not have Robert Williams III in that game.

Various statistics reflect RW III's effectiveness as a defender.  Opposing scorers, for example, tend to suffer for efficiency when they try to attack him.

His presence in tonight's game was in question. But Coach Udoka has declared that Williams III will be available tonight and that he won't face minutes restriction.

With Williams III on the floor, Boston is not disadvantaged at the center position as it was when Adebayo led Miami's offensive efforts. 

Williams III's defensive presence creates a ripple effect because, as a result of Boston limiting Adebayo, Tyler Herro will also be less effective.

Some want to call Herro a "Celtic killer" because of the huge scoring outputs that he has produced against Boston in the past.

However, in watching Herro's performances, it is apparent that he benefitted from Adebayo's success.

When Celtic defenders don't have to worry so much about Adebayo, then they'll be able to account more successfully for Herro. 

No More Giannis 

Boston should be grateful that its defense won't have to deal with the likes of Giannis.

Combined with Brook Lopez, Milwaukee's frontcourt placed immense physical pressure on Boston's interior defense.

In particular, Giannis enjoyed the strength and overall freakish athleticism to will his way to the basket, especially when he was taking advantage of certain Celtic switches.

Miami does not have a Giannis. Jimmy Butler has done well in these playoffs, sure, but Boston has numerous effective individual defenders to throw at him.

These are guys who won't be physically outmatched as they were by Giannis.

Can Miami Limit Jayson Tatum? 

But, on the other side, can the Heat account for Boston superstar Jayson Tatum? Let's consider why someone might like Tatum tonight.

So far, Miami has excelled against stars who can both score and facilitate. The Heat stymied Trae Young before limiting James Harden.

But Tatum looks to be a different animal. He is not small like Young, which means he can more effectively pass and shoot over the top of swarming Heat defenders.

Tatum is also not washed up and repeatedly slow and lackluster off the dribble like Harden is.

However, during the regular season, Tatum averaged his third-fewest points per game against the Heat defense.

Evidently, Tatum is not worth liking against Miami's defense.

Zone Defense 

I also worry about Boston's offense because Miami enjoys employing a zone defense.

Boston, however, has scored the third-fewest PPP (points per possession) against this type of defense.

Total Verdict 

This promises to be a low-scoring defensive battle. In addition to the "under" I like the Heat because they are more well-rested.

Boston is coming off a Game 7, which took place just two days ago on Sunday. It doesn't seem fair to give Boston only one full day of rest. 

For the above reasons, I recommend investing in the "under" and the Heat ATS for your best bets. Be sure to use our trusty parlay calculator for your parlay betting needs.

Parlay Pick

  • Heat -1.5 (-110)
  • Under 204 (-110)

NBA Pick: Two-Legged Parlay (+264) with BetOnline (visit our BetOnline Review)

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*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.