NBA Finals: Miami Heat vs. San Antonio Spurs
NBA Finals  TV Coverage: ABC
NBA Finals Odds at JustBet: San Antonio -135/Miami +115

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2014 NBA Finals Analysis: The defending NBA champion Miami Heat will be looking for the 3-peat, while the San Antonio Spurs will look to capture their fifth NBA title as the two premier franchises in the NBA meet in the NBA Finals for the second consecutive year.

The Miami Heat had a relatively easy road to the finals this year. The Heat swept their first round series against Charlotte, disposed of the Brooklyn Nets in 5 games, and lastly defeated the Indiana Pacers 4-2 in the Eastern Conference finals. The Eastern Conference was weak this season, and there is really no other way to put it. The 3 seed Toronto Raptors wouldn’t have made the playoffs if they were in the Western conference with their 48-34 record. Even though Miami was the second seed, they were head and shoulders above the rest of the conference despite their record as Dwayne Wade missed significant time during the season. Wade is now healthy, and it’s apparent as he is averaging 18.7 ppg. They are led by none other than LeBron James, who is averaging 27.1 ppg, and is leading the team in points, rebounds, assists, and steals.

San Antonio has been somewhat challenged in the playoffs this year, as they were taken to the brink in the first round by the Dallas Mavericks winning the series in 7 games. The next round they dominated Portland winning the series 4-1, and then defeated Oklahoma City 4-2 in a series of blowout wins and losses. The Spurs were the number 1 seed in the superior Western Conference with a 62-20 record. The Spurs consist of a mixture of veterans and talented role players. In the playoffs they have 5 players averaging double figures with Tony Parker leading the way averaging 17.1 ppg. Tim Duncan certainly isn’t showing his age, averaging 16.5 ppg while leading the team in rebounding grabbing 8.9 per game.

In last year’s series, Miami had the home court edge and they played the normal 2-3-3 format, which had been in place since 1984. This year they will be playing a 2-2-1-1-1 format. While getting Miami at +115 looks very attractive, they don’t have home court advantage, and while they are capable of winning on the road, so is San Antonio. I’m backing the Spurs and believe they have better overall team. Tony Parker’s ankle has been in question, as he was hurt in game 6 of the Western Conference Finals, but reports are that he will be ready to go. The starting 5’s for each team is pretty much even, with Miami having the slight advantage with James. In last year’s series, the Spurs had a lot of players with no finals experience, guys like Thiago Splitter, the up and coming Kawhi Leonard, and Patty Mills. This year it’s a different story, and this year’s San Antonio team, while they might be a tad older, is better. While Miami might have a slight edge as far as the starting 5’s are concerned, the San Antonio bench is the difference, as they are far superior. The Spurs are also playing with some revenge, as they were 35 seconds away from hoisting the Larry O’Brien trophy before Ray Allen’s heroics in game 6. Miami is trying to become the first team since the 2002 Lakers to win 3 consecutive champions, so they might be feeling a little bit of pressure. The Spurs are the better overall team from the better conference, they have home court advantage, and have the better coach in Gregg Popovich. San Antonio wins the NBA Finals in convincing fashion.

Free NBA Finals Finals Pick: San Antonio Spurs -135
NBA Finals Prediction: San Antonio wins series 4 games to 2



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