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Heat Looks To Avoid Brooklyn Sweep

Success has alluded Miami against Brooklyn this season? Can the Heat avoid a sweep on Tuesday?

Success has eluded Miami against Brooklyn this season? Can the Heat avoid a sweep on Tuesday?

The Miami Heat will look do something they haven’t done all season Tuesday; beat the Brooklyn Nets.

Tip-off at American Airlines Arena is scheduled for 8:00 p.m. ET.

In three meetings with the Nets this season, Miami (53-23, 31-7 home) has come up short each time. The Heat will look to avoid a first season sweep in the series since the 2002-03 campaign when the two lock horns on Tuesday.

The Heat has by no means been dominated though. A pair of one-point losses sandwich a double-overtime defeat, meaning this had been an incredibly close matchup, something that hadn’t been the case for a long time. Prior to this season, Miami had won 13 straight in the series.

But looking ahead, Eric Spoelstra’s side will want to prove it can get the better of the Nets, especially with a potential playoff matchup on the line.

The Heat moved a step closer to securing the Eastern Conference’s No. 1 seed on Sunday, handing the New York Knicks a 102-91 defeat. The victory, coupled with an uncharacteristic home loss for the Indiana Pacers, saw the Heat take a one-game lead at the top of the conference standings, and with a pair of games in hand on the Pacers, the Heat now looks the most likely candidate to finish top of the East pile.

However, a rough schedules means the Heat will face five of six teams that are either playoff bound or involved in the postseason race before the end of the season. And with a head-to-head showdown against the Pacers looming on Friday night, failure to stop the Nets on Tuesday could be very costly.

Brooklyn (42-34, 15-23 road) is assured of a postseason berth and while Jason Kidd’s side could still mathematically finish as high as third, the Toronto Raptors and Chicago Bulls – each currently three games to the better in the win column – may have done just enough to stay in front. They both certainly have the schedule to do so.

But the Nets would do well to at least make a concerted effort to secure home-court advantage in the first round, not least because life on the road hasn’t been a breeze for the Nets this season.

Since January 1, Brooklyn has gone an outstanding 32-13 to turn its season around. But that stretch contains an 11-11 run away from Barclays Center. A .500 record on the road is not to be dismissed and could set the side out as a legitimate road threat come playoff time, but when you consider the Nets are 21-2 at home during that stretch, you can imagine Kidd and Co. would like to be hosting for at least the first round.

The Nets snapped a three-game road losing streak on Saturday, defeating the Philadelphia 76ers 105-101 at Wells Fargo Center. They’ll hope to make it two in a row on Tuesday.

After missing 19 games with back spasms, Kevin Garnett returned to the fray Sunday night, tallying 10 points and four rebounds in 13 minutes of action. However, Garnett is expected to sit against the Heat before returning against the Orlando Magic on Wednesday.

Miami’s lineup meanwhile continues to be in a state of flux. Chris Anderson (back), Greg Oden (back) and Dwyane Wade (hamstring) – all listed as day-to-day – are uncertain for Tuesday’s game against the Nets.

The Nets secured a 96-95 victory in their previous visit to American Airlines Arena on March 12, a game which saw Paul Pierce turn back the clocks with a 29-point performance. A 36-13 advantage in bench scoring was noticeable in that game, particularly as the Nets only played four reserves. With a deeper lineup ready to go on Tuesday, can the team complete the sweep?

Brooklyn Nets vs. Miami Heat odds for 04/08/2014

At the time of publication, Vegas was still holding off on lines for this one. Miami’s injuries and Brooklyn’s record in the series so far this year meant that more consideration was needed.

You can find the latest odds at the link above when they become available.

Both Brooklyn (41-35-0 ATS) and Miami (38-37-1 ATS) have had marginal success against the spread this season.

The Heat is 6-1-0 ATS in its last seven games, while the Nets are just 1-5-0 ATS in their last six road games. Brooklyn however has gone 3-0-0 ATS against Miami this season, all games in which the side was considered the underdog.

Both Brooklyn (39-35-2) and Miami (41-35-0) have also favored the over this season.

The over has paid out in eight of Brooklyn’s last 11 games but the under has paid out in four of Miami’s last six home games.

The over paid out in the first two meetings between the sides this season, while the under paid out when they met in Miami. The under has cashed in in six of the last seven the two sides have played at American Airlines Arena.

For a full list of today’s NBA odds, click here.

For the latest NBA futures odds, click here.

For the latest NBA team prop bets, click here.

For the latest NBA player prop bets, click here.

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