Can Spurs Upset Heat in NBA Finals?
Can Spurs Upset Heat in NBA Finals?
By Wayne Root:
It would be hard to call the underdog San Antonio Spurs a"Cinderella" team if they knock off the favored Miami Heat in the NBA Championships that begin Thursday in South Beach. San Antonio is at the tail end of what's been one of the greatest dynasties in league history. They are led and coached by future Hall-of-Famers. The Finals feature two common entries, which has already guaranteed that only EIGHT different franchises will have hoisted the trophy over the last 80 years.
So no Cinderella story this year. Will we have a series UPSET? Can the Spurs score at least one upset as a road underdog of +5 of +6 when playing in Miami? Those are very important questions for handicappers...and are right up the alley for the documented KING OF UPSETS in sports betting!
I'm not going to tip my hand for the series here in a web article. It's safe to assume that I'll be backing the Spurs at least once as a road underdog in this series given my personal history. But, I also know that there's no point in throwing money at underdogs who don't match up well in a particular head-to-head battle. How do the Spurs match up with the Heat?
I have to say that San Antonio has been disappointing the past few seasons when it came time to step up and play championship basketball. Many of the same guys are back from the team that was dispatched from the Western Finals last year. This is a group that really knows how to abuse lesser teams...and how to exploit clear weaknesses (which they did vs. Memphis last week). Can they really SCARE Miami?
The Spurs also have trouble sustaining scoreboard distance from teams even when things are going well. You saw that with some blown leads vs. Golden State (even though Seth Curry was playing with a bad ankle and the team as a whole was inexperienced). You even saw that when they were sweeping Memphis...having to sweat finishes that shouldn't have been sweated. Neither of those teams had LeBron James! If San Antonio gets a nice lead in any game, it may not be safe until after the buzzer has sounded.
Home court advantage hasn't proven to be consistently strong for the Spurs in the last two rounds...and they're probably going to have to win at least twice at home, if not all three times if they're going to spring a SHOCK THE SYSTEM upset of the Heat
SPURS AT HOME VS. WARRIORS
Game One: overtime
Game Two: lost 100-91
Game Three: Easy win
SPURS AT HOME VS. MEMPHIS
Game One: Easy win
Game Two: overtime
That's two easy wins out of five games, one loss, and two overtime games. If you assume that Miami is better than both Golden State and Memphis (a fair assessment), then we're looking at the equivalent of a 2-3 home record for the Spurs in those two rounds.
I think, in handicapping terms, San Antonio is going to make a lot more sense as a"situational" underdog in a given game or two than they will as anything more than a value bet for the series. Miami can be beaten in a game. Can they be eliminated?
What San Antonio must do to win:
Make a lot of treys after crisp ball movement. They're capable of doing this periodically...can they do it on command?
Keep LeBron James away from the rim as much as possible. They don't defend like Indiana does. They'll have to figure out a way to deny trips to the basket for Heat slashers.
Frustrate Dwyane Wade! Miami turns mortal when Wade is grumpy and complaining about things. Dallas showed two years ago that the best way to beat Miami was to frustrate one or two of"the big three." Well, that and make a lot of jumpshots! San Antonio must win the mental battle.
I'm looking forward to handicapping the sides and totals in this series. You can purchase my game-by-game selections beginning Thursday here at the website. Don't forget that we have daily baseball as well...and baseball has been easy to beat this year! If you're wondering which of my programs best suits your individual needs, please talk to one of my representatives in my handicapping office at 1-877-766-8946.
Vegas really started to buzz about the NBA late in the Miami/Indiana series. The city is really going to be hopping for the championship round. I can assure you that THE KING OF LAS VEGAS is ready to win big in another major event! That means it's time for YOU to go to W.A.R. alongside WAYNE ALLYN ROOT!
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