Thursday Night POWER-HOUSE (On NBA TV)
Toronto vs. Miami,
01/02/2020 19:30 EDT,
Score: 76 - 84
Point Spread: +6/-110 Toronto
8* Toronto (7:35 ET): Oddsmakers seem to be doubting the Raptors in this matchup of top Eastern Conference teams. The defending NBA Champs have certainly proven that they are still going to be a force despite losing Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard. I know they've been dogged by injuries more than just about any team besides Golden State (oh, the irony!) but even w/o Pascal Siakam the Raptors were able to go to Boston recently and win by 16. I'll take the points in this revenge spot.
Miami had a five-game winning streak going into their final contest of 2019. But four of those five wins had been by four points or less, including three straight by a total of five pts. Those close calls caught up with them in Washington where they suffered a shocking outright loss as 14-point favorites to a severely undermanned Wizards team. Thus, the Heat have now failed to cover four in a row. While they are 15-1 SU at home, I don't buy that they should be laying more than three points to this particular opponent.
As alluded to above, this is a revenge game for the Raptors. Almost exactly one month ago, they lost at home to the Heat 121-110 as 5.5-point favorites. That was Kyle Lowry's first game back from his injury and he shot terribly, missing all 11 three-point attempts in addition to his first 11 shots overall. That won't happen again. The Raptors swept the season series from the Heat last year. While Miami is coming off a terrible defensive effort (gave up a 42-point quarter), Toronto has held three straight opponents below 100 points. That makes them attractive as the underdog. 8* Toronto