NBA Finals Preview: San Antonio Spurs at Miami Heat

NBA Finals Preview:  San Antonio Spurs at Miami Heat

Game 2 of the NBA Finals takes place on Sunday and to the surprise of most the home team is a game ‘in the hole’. The Spurs upset the Heat in Game 1 to grab a 1-0 advantage in the best of seven series. San Antonio stayed close throughout the game and took control in the fourth quarter and were clearly the more poised team in the final minutes of the contest. Now the Heat look to even the series at a game apiece before they head off to San Antonio for the next three games due to the 2-3-2 format the NBA employs in the Finals.

Simply put, the Heat need to win this game. They can’t afford to head down to Texas for three games with an 0-2 series deficit. This means that the Spurs would need only to win two of three on their home floor to take the NBA Title without having to make a return trip to Miami. The road team has won the first two games three times in NBA history and on all three occasions they went on to win the championship. Not only is a 2-0 Spurs lead something that Miami can’t afford to deal with neither can the NBA and its television partners.

From a strictly statistical standpoint this looks to be a great spot to take the Spurs plus a generous number of points. Our power ratings suggest that this game is a near pick ’em contest and there are several situational records that favor the road team. The Spurs have only lost twice in the postseason going 13-2 SU/11-4 ATS. They manhandled the Eastern Conference during the regular season going 26-5 SU/21-10 ATS. Miami on the other hand was a very strong play coming off a home loss going 5-1 SU/ATS to date. The Heat have won 3 of the last 4 meetings between the teams in Miami though the pointspread result was an even 2-2 split.

This game is ‘the season’ for the Miami Heat. Look for them to come out with a focus, determined effort–and perhaps get a little ‘home cooking’ from the referees–to even this series and send it to Texas tied 1-1.