American Airlines Arena in Miami, Fla., will be the site for Game 6 of the 2014 NBA playoffs between the Indiana Pacers and Miami Heat. According to a May 30 SBN report, opening tipoff (start time) is scheduled for 8:40 p.m. EST (7:40 p.m. CST/5:40 p.m. PST) on ESPN (national TV) and online at Watch-ESPN (live stream) and ESPN-Deportes (Español).
The two-time defending NBA champs come in with a great opportunity to clinch their fourth-straight Eastern Conference title and eventually establish themselves as a dynasty by winning a three-peat. Playing the role of spoiler, last year’s conference runners-up hope to force a Game 7 back on their home court with an improbable win this evening.
NBA playoffs oddsmakers at ESPN list the (3-2) Miami Heat [-8] as eight-point ATS favorites over the (2-3) Indiana Pacers [+8] in the penultimate game of this best-of-seven series. The OVER/UNDER is set at a combined total of 185 points, and alternate (straight-up) betting lines go as follows: Road team [+350] vs. Home team [-440].
For the Pacers, a CBS Sports report states that Lance Stephenson’s on-court antics may force the organization to part ways with their former second-round pick following this season. Another (ESPN) report states that team president Larry Bird even met with the “ear-blowing” guard before Game 6 to issue him a warning.
“He said, ‘Don’t do it again,’ so I’m not going to do it again,” said Stephenson following his meeting with the legend. “He’s kept me on the right path my whole career, and if he says something to me, I take it to heart.”
For the Heat, with Indy being the higher seed, tonight’s contest has to be looked at and approached as a winner-takes-all Game 7. An ABC News report wonders how LeBron James will bounce back following the worst game of his NBA playoff career tonight at home.
“The greats usually try to respond with a comeback-type of performance,” said Pacers head coach Frank Vogel. “So I think we can expect that.”
Can the Indiana Pacers go into hostile territory and force a decisive Game 7 back at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on Sunday, or will the Miami Heat remain perfect in closeout games at home with a “W” this evening? Here are some pretty interesting statistics to keep in mind heading into tonight’s NBA playoffs Game 6 between the Pacers and Heat:
General Consensus Prior to ESPN Schedule TV Start Time
Indiana Pacers spread: 48 percent.
Miami Heat spread: 52 percent.
OVER action: 74 percent.
UNDER action: 26 percent.
ATS Trends Prior to Watch-ESPN/ESPN-Deportes Live Stream
Indiana is 5-2 in its last seven road games.
Indiana is 5-2 in its last seven road games against teams with winning home records.
Indiana is 16-35-1 in its last 52 games overall.
Miami is 4-0 in its last four home games versus a team with a winning road record.
Miami is 4-1 in its last five games following an ATS loss.
Miami is 4-1 in its last five home games.
Pacers vs Heat 2014 NBA Playoffs Key Game 6 Stats
OVER is 4-0 in the last 4 meetings at AmericanAirlines Arena.
Favorite is 4-0 ATS in the last 4 meetings.
Home team is 5-1 ATS in the last 6 meetings.
Pacers are 2-5 ATS in the last 7 meetings.
Pacers are 1-5 ATS in the last 6 meetings at AmericanAirlines Arena.