The Miami Heat will look to go up 2-0 in the series against the New York Knicks this Wednesday, but that’s going to be easier said than done, of course. Will Miami stun the Big Apple again? Or, will the Knicks respond with a win?
Catch this game live on Wednesday, May 3, at 7:30 AM, Manila time
Away: Miami Heat (1-0)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Gabe Vincent
- SG: Max Strus
- SF: Jimmy Butler (questionable)
- PF: Kevin Love
- C: Bam Adebayo
There’s no way the Heat would have reached this far in the postseason without Jimmy Butler, which is also why his availability for Game 2 is the most important factor in this upcoming matchup. Butler is questionable as of this writing for Wednesday’s game because of a sprained right ankle. A possible Butler absence will leave a void that’s going to be tough to cover for Miami.
That said, Miami’s other star, Bam Adebayo, is healthy. Adebayo is coming off a 16-point, 8-rebound effort in Miami’s stunning 108-101 road win in the series opener. It’s also a good sign for the Heat that Kyle Lowry has discovered his groove early in the series, scoring 18 points off the bench in Game 1. The Heat, who are second in the playoffs with a 118.2 offensive rating, are 4-0 against the spread in their last four games versus a team with a winning record.
Home: New York Knicks (0-1)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Jalen Brunson (questionable)
- SG: Quentin Grimes
- SF: RJ Barrett
- PF: Julius Randle (questionable)
- C: Mitchell Robinson
The Knicks’ loss in Game 1 at the hands of Miami was their first at home since the playoffs kicked off. They also played that game without Julius Randle, who’s once again carrying a questionable label ahead of Game 2 due to a lower-body injury. Another status to monitor for the Knicks is that of Jalen Brunson. The Knicks’ leading scorer in the playoffs has a sore right ankle.
New York can weather a potential Brunson absence, as the Knicks still have Immanuel Quickley, who is due for a big game after just averaging 9.0 points through the first six games of the playoffs. Also expect the Knicks to keep winning the rebounding battle. They are second in the playoffs with a 54.7 REB%, thanks to Mitchell Robinson and Josh Hart, who are averaging 10.5 and 7.8 rebounds in the postseason, respectively. The Knicks are 3-1-1 against the spread in their last five outings after allowing at least 100 points in a prior contest.
Spread: The Knicks (-7) cover the spread.
Over/Under: The total (206.5) hits the Under.