The Miami Heat are perfect at home, but far fom perfect at home for bettors. They open as seven-point home favorite to the visiting New York Knicks in NBA betting action Thursday.
The Heat, who failed to cover against the Knicks in November, are the league's high-scoring home team, and the line was climbing by midday.
New York Knicks at Miami Heat (Thursday, 8:00 PM ET)
Last Thursday night, the San Antonio Spurs shocked the basketball world by sending four of their star players back home to San Antonio before their game against the Miami Heat. Bettors won't have to worry about antics like that this time around with first place in the Eastern Conference on the line in Thursday night's game.
With a 13-4 SU record, New York is a half-game ahead of Miami (12-4 SU) for the top spot in the East.
Miami had a six-game winning streak snapped in shocking fashion on Tuesday when it lost as a 10-point road favorite to the league's worst team, the Washington Wizards. With the loss, Miami fell to 4-4 SU and 3-5 ATS on the road.
This game smells like a rebound game for Miami, as they have motivation to win big here.
While the Heat are 8-0 SU at home, they are just 4-4 ATS on the season and 1-3 ATS over their last four home games.
Like Miami, the Knicks have pretty severe home and road splits. At home, the Knicks are 7-0 SU and 6-1 ATS. On the road, they are 6-4 SU and 5-5 ATS. New York enters Thursday's game on a four-game winning streak, including two straight wins on the road.
Miami is 5-0 SU and 3-1-1 ATS in its last five home games against the Knicks and 9-1 SU at home against the Knicks since 2009. Overall, Miami is 14-4 SU and 10-7-1 ATS over its last 18 games against New York, but the Knicks are 2-1 SU and 2-0-1 ATS over their last three meetings (with the two wins coming in New York).
Despite the offensive output of both of these teams (New York ranks fourth in scoring with 102.7 points per game and Miami ranks second with 104.4 PPG), this series has actually trended heavily towards the UNDER in recent years at 10-2-1 over the last 13 games between the Knicks and the Heat.
This game features two of the league's top four scorers in Carmelo Anthony (26.4 PPG) and James (24.8 PPG).