The Miami Heat had a solid 2017-18 season, finishing sixth in the Eastern Conference and winning the Southeast Division with a 44-38 record (26-15 at home, 18-23 on the road), but they were easily beaten by Philadelphia 76ers 4-1 in the first round of the NBA Playoffs. Although without superstars in the team, the coach Erik Spoelstra managed to assemble a strong group of players that had the seventh defensive rating in the league allowing their opponents 106.3 points per 100 possessions.
The Heat fans hope for another successful season, so let’s take a look at the latest futures and props on the Miami Heat and see what can the bettors expect from them in the 2018-19 NBA season. Odds courtesy of BetDSI Sportsbook.
Miami Heat Futures Odds
Win Total Over/Under at 41.5: Over -140; Under +120
To Win the Southeast Division at +180
To Win the Eastern Conference at +6600
To Win the NBA Championship at +30000
To Make NBA Playoffs: YES -500, NO +333 (Bet365 Sportsbook)
Miami Heat Player Movement
Draft: No Picks
Unrestricted Free Agents: Dwyane Wade, Udonis Haslem, Luke Babbitt
This summer, the Heat didn’t make any moves, keeping the whole team from the previous season, but there are some rumors about Dwyane Wade’s future, as he’s unrestricted free agent with some intriguing offers from China. However, the 12-time All-Star stated that he wants to play in Miami uniform, while Pat Riley hopes Wade and Udonis Haslem both will be back next season.
Miami Heat 2018-19 Roster
The 32-year old point guard Goran Dragic was the leader of this Heat team in the previous season, averaging 17.3 points, 4.1 rebounds, and 4.8 assists, shooting 45.0% from the field and 37.0 from beyond the arc. Dragic earned his first All-Star selection as a replacement for the injured Kevin Love, but the experienced guard completely deserved the invitation with some excellent displays during the season. Has many weapons in his offensive set, and he’s particularly dangerous out of pick and roll situations, as Dragic likes to attack the rim while also knows to pull out a jump-shot from the mid-range.
Dragic plays very well alongside Hassan Whiteside, as the big man’s screens allow the Slovenian guard to use his abilities. Whiteside had some injury problems last year, playing just 54 games in the regular season, averaging 14.0 points and 11.4 rebounds, proving he has become one of the best centers in the league. With 8.2 defensive rebounds and 1.7 blocks per game, Hassan Whiteside is a great rim protector but needs to improve his spacing. Last year, Spoelstra often used the small ball lineup when needed quickness at the defensive end. On the other side of the ball, Whiteside is the best when playing pick and roll, while his post game is pretty mediocre, so the Heat needs someone else besides Goran Dragic to cooperate with Hassan.
The 26-year old shooting guard Dion Waiters is another guy who struggled with injuries since he arrived in Miami, playing only 76 games in two regular seasons with the Heat. In January 2018, he had an ankle surgery, so Waiters played 30 games last season, recording 14.3 points, 2.6 rebounds, and 3.8 assists while hitting 39.8% of his field goals. Downhill Dion couldn’t help his teammates in the playoff series against the 76ers, so the fans hope he could finally find the right rhythm in the 2018-19 season.
The 24-year old small forward Josh Richardson will enter his third NBA season with Miami Heat who selected him as a 40th pick at the 2015 NBA Draft, and Richardson started 81 games last year, averaging 12.9 points, 3.5 rebounds, and 2.9 assists. Josh played some strong defense, having 1.5 steals per game and guarding the rivals’ best outside scorers, and he was a big factor in Miami’s intelligent defensive play. Richardson can switch any type of player and still do a decent job. However, Josh is not just a good stopper, as he also knows how to score buckets, nailing 45.1% of field goals and 37.8% of his 3-pointers.
The guards Tyler Johnson and Wayne Ellington will continue to contribute, as they both were important members of the Heat roster last season. Johnson had 11.7 points, 3.4 rebounds, and 2.3 assists per game, starting in 39 games, while Ellington was coming off the bench to record 11.2 points, 2.8 rebounds, and 1.0 assists. Ellington is a good spot-up shooter, hitting 39.2% of his 7.5 3-point shots per game. With Dwyane Wade in the lineup, Ellington should get even more space to nail from downtown.
The seven-footer Kelly Olynyk should get more minutes this year, as he was doing a great job for the Heat last year with his spacing, averaging 11.5 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 2.7 minutes in 23.4 minutes per game. Olynyk was exceptional coming off the bench, and the forwards James Johnson and Justise Winslow both should have a similar role this season.
Players Under Contract:
Goran Dragic (PG), Rodney McGruder (SG), Dion Waiters (SG), Tyler Johnson (SG)
Wayne Ellington (SG), Josh Richardson (SF), Justise Winslow (SF)
Derrick Jones Jr. (SF), James Johnson (PF), Kelly Olynyk (PF-C)
Hassan Whiteside (C), Bam Adebayo (C)
Total Win Prediction and Betting Picks
The best thing Pat Riley could do is to keep the guys who clinched the Playoffs berth last year and try to improve this group, having a ton of confidence in the head coach Erik Spoelstra. Two times in the previous four seasons the Miami Heat managed to surpass the 41-win mark, and both times they made it to the post-season, while two years ago, the Heat missed the playoffs with a 41-41 record. This year, they will probably need 42 wins to reach the playoff spot, and if they stay healthy, the Heat should beat the lines.
Erik Spoelstra’s team won the Southeast Division last year, one victory ahead of the Washington Wizards who are -150 favorites to win the division title this season. It should be a close battle, but I think the Heat will lose it in the end, although +180 odds on Miami to retain the crown seem quite tempting. Reaching the first round of the Eastern Conference Playoffs should be a success for the Heat who certainly plan to make a step further in this term. Winning the conference at +6600 sounds like an impossible mission, but with Erik Spoelstra on the bench, the Heat will be a tough opponent to beat, for sure.
The Pick: Over 41.5 (-140)
Prediction: Eastern Conference First Round