The first game up on Friday’s NBA Playoffs tripleheader slate features Game 3 between the Miami Heat and Atlanta Hawks. The 1-seed Heat took care of business in each of the first two games on their home floor. After a suffocating defensive effort in the series-opener, superstar Jimmy Butler exploded on the offensive end to carry Miami in Game 2. Now, it’s up to the Hawks to punch back as the action shifts to the Peach State. Let’s take a look at the top NBA odds, picks and betting trends, then give a Heat vs Hawks prediction for this NBA Playoffs Game 3 matchup.
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Heat vs Hawks Game Info and Preview | NBA Playoffs
NBA Eastern Conference Playoffs First Round — Game 3 (MIA leads 2-0)
(1) Miami Heat (53-29, 24-17 Away) vs. (8) Atlanta Hawks (43-39, 27-14 Home)
Date: Friday, April 22, 2022
Time: 7 PM EST
Venue: State Farm Arena — Atlanta, GA
In case anyone needed a reminder of how clutch Jimmy Butler is, he provided just that in Game 2 of this Heat vs Hawks NBA betting series. Arguably the best two-way player in the league today, Butler went off for 45 points and essentially willed the Heat to a 2-0 series lead. Tyler Herro was Miami’s next-highest scorer on Wednesday night, and he had just 15 points! While the Heat failed to suffocate Atlanta to quite the same degree defensively as they did in Game 1, they still forced 19 turnovers and led throughout. Such championship-caliber defense will be needed if the Heat are to put a stranglehold on this series on the road in Game 3.
After being held to a paltry eight points in Game 1, Trae Young was able to bounce back to an extent for the Hawks on Wednesday night. Although he fell just shy of his NBA betting player props scoring total, Young compiled an impressive line of 25 points, seven assists and even six rebounds. The ability of Young and other Hawks players to pitch in on the glass will again be a key part of Friday’s Heat vs Hawks prediction. Starting Atlanta center Clint Capela is set to miss his second straight game with a knee injury. While John Collins achieved a 13-point, 10-rebound double-double in Game 2, he cannot be expected to fully replace Capela by himself. The Hawks will need to account for the loss of their center as a collective unit on the boards.
Heat vs Hawks NBA Betting Picks and Odds
Moneyline: MIA: (-130) | ATL: (+110)
Point Spread: MIA: -2 (-110) | ATL: +2 (-110)
Total: 222 — Over: (-113) | Under: (-107)
Public (Spread) Betting Percentages (via Action Network): MIA: (69%) | ATL: (31%)
Heat vs Hawks NBA Betting Trends
- Heat are 8-1 ATS in their last nine games overall.
- The OVER is 4-0 in the Heat’s last four road games as an NBA betting favorite.
- Heat are 6-0 ATS in their last six games against teams with a winning record.
- Hawks are 0-4 ATS in their last four games as an NBA betting underdog.
- Hawks are a perfect 9-0 ATS in their last nine home games against teams with a winning road record.
- The total has gone UNDER in ten of the Hawks’ last 11 games as an NBA betting underdog.
- Heat are just 2-5 ATS in their last seven head-to-head matchups against the Hawks in Atlanta.
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Heat vs Hawks Prediction | NBA Betting Picks
Under normal circumstances, one could reasonably argue that the Hawks would be slight favorites playing at home tonight. However, the absence of Clint Capela throws a wrench into how Game 3 is priced. Is Capela the most impactful player on Atlanta’s roster? Absolutely not. However, he is quite important considering what the Heat offer in terms of personnel. With a physical frontcourt that is led by Bam Adebayo and P.J. Tucker, matching up with Miami successfully requires a significant amount of effort and attention when it comes to rebounding the basketball.
It’s fully worth noting that the Hawks answered this challenge on Wednesday. Despite being without Capela in Game 2, Atlanta actually finished with a 40-34 edge in total rebounds. The Hawks also had seven offensive boards compared to just four for the Heat. If a similar effort can be put forth in Game 3, the home underdog becomes very appealing for tonight’s Heat vs Hawks prediction.
The other key takeaway from Game 2 was that, other than Jimmy Butler, the Heat struggled on the offensive end. It seems logical to say that Butler probably won’t score 45 points for a second straight game, especially given that the series is now shifting to Atlanta. If the Hawks are to have any shot at elongating this series, a win tonight is crucial. Expect them to be in the game down to the very end.
Our NBA betting Heat vs Hawks prediction tonight will be the Hawks +2 against the spread at BetOnline.
For what it’s worth, the ESPN Matchup Predictor gives the Hawks a 60.1% chance to win.