This one is officially billed as Indiana Pacers vs. Miami Heat, but really for us fans, it’s T.J. Warren vs Jimmy Butler.
These two teams met back on 9 January in a fiery game that saw Warren and Butler go head to head, quite literally. Words were exchanged throughout the game, Warren was ejected, and Butler told reporters that the Pacer was “soft” and “trash".
A match-up that was already exciting with the two teams sitting one spot apart in the standings, it has only got more exciting through the form of Warren and the return of Butler who had missed Miami’s last two games.
Here are our best bets for this one, including what our projections are for the two stars of the show.
Lock: Heat ML (-164*)
Spread: Pacers +3.5 (-105*)
Total points: Under 220.5 (-105*)
A couple of teams that could be poised for a nice playoff run, the Heat will see this is their chance to separate themselves from the bottom half of the East playoff teams.
While we do have the Heat as winning this one, the likelihood of this being below the 220.5 points, means that we see it being close. The Pacers to cover is a solid pick here.
Our model has this one being right on the 220.5 mark, so the better odds on offer for the under is the play.
An exciting game for fans across the country, and hopefully one we will see at least four more times in the first round of the playoffs.
We’re projecting Warren (19 points) and Butler (20) each to top score for their teams.
*Odds correct at time of publishing.
Check out our full Monday NBA picks here.