Heat vs. Hawks Line Miami -6.5: Mavericks vs. Rockets Spread Dallas -2

Written by:
Carrie Stroup
Published on:
Apr/11/2011
Heat vs. Hawks Line

The Heat vs. Hawks line was coming in at Miami -6.5 while the Mavericks vs. Rockets spread had the away Mavs at -2.   The Miami game had a total of 190.5 while the Houston total was 206.5.  All odds courtesy of Sportsbook.com

The struggling Hawks welcome the surging Heat for a battle that could decide if Miami has home-court advantage in the second round of the playoffs.

Miami took over second place in the Eastern Conference with its 100-77 victory Sunday over the Celtics. The Heat have won 13 out of 16 and after they play Atlanta, their last remaining game is against the less-than-competitive Toronto Raptors. LeBron James (26.6 PPG) has been terrific against the Hawks this season, averaging 33.0 PPG including a 43-point outburst in a 106-85 victory on March 18. Miami would love to see the bench perform as they did Sunday, where they outscored Boston’s bench 32-12 with help from Mario Chalmers who had nine points and Joel Anthony who had seven.

This is not the basketball Atlanta wants to be playing heading into the playoffs. The Hawks have lost four in a row and are in jeopardy of losing five in a row for the first time since Feb. 8-20, 2008. The Hawks, who are ninth in the NBA, allowing just 95.8 PPG, have been playing atrocious defense. They have surrendered 110.0 PPG on 52.3% FG during the four-game skid. The Hawks last loss was an embarrassing 115-83 defeat to the horrid Wizards. Al Horford (15.6 PPG) was the only Hawks player with a strong game, scoring 21 points and grabbing 10 rebounds.

Neither team is good overall against the spread, as Miami is 36-41 ATS and Atlanta is 37-43 ATS. But Miami has had some decent road success going 22-16 ATS. One thing that has plagued the Heat all year is beating teams with winning records, as they have a 15-19 ATS record against teams above .500. Atlanta is only 16-24 ATS in home games and 13-19 ATS when revenging a loss against an opponent. The Hawks are actually worse than the Heat against winning teams, going 14-21 ATS.

Dallas vs. Houston:

The Mavericks find themselves in a tight race for the second seed in the Western Conference and face a Rockets team who might be without some key players.

Dallas is tied with the Lakers for second in the West and both teams are one game ahead of Oklahoma City. Dallas lost four in a row before winning its last two over the Clippers and Suns. Luckily for the Mavericks, the Lakers have dropped five straight games, and most recently were defeated by the Thunder 120-106 on Sunday. After a scuffle during a timeout in Friday’s game, J.J. Barea (9.5 PPG) and Jason Terry (15.7 PPG) resolved their differences and combined for 32 points off the bench in Sunday’s 115-90 win over the Suns. Dallas has won all three games versus Houston this season and looks to sweep the season series for the first time since 2002-2003.

Houston finds itself on the outside looking in on the playoffs, but will still play hard for veteran coach Rick Adelman who recently just won his 944th career game to move into eighth on the all-time list. Luis Scola (18.3 PPG) and Kyle Lowry (13.5 PPG) sat out Saturday’s 99-78 victory over the Clippers, and both players are doubtful for Monday’s game. This will put more pressure on leading scorer Kevin Martin (23.4 PPG) to have a high-scoring effort for the Rockets to keep up with the high-powered Mavs. In the season series versus Dallas, Martin has averaged 20.3 PPG, but shot just 37.8 percent from the floor. Houston also needs Chuck Hayes (7.9 PPG 8.0 RPG) to play as he did Saturday when he recorded a double-double by dropping 12 points and grabbing 13 rebounds.

Dallas has been great on the road at 24-16 ATS, and has also played well in back-to-back games (12-7 ATS). Dallas, which loves a shootout, is 24-17 ATS against teams that score 99.0 PPG or more. Houston has not been hard to beat at home (19-20 ATS) and only 18-22 ATS against teams with winning records.

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