NBA Finals Game 3 Odds, Predictions, and Best Bet

Jimmy Butler #22 of the Miami Heat dribbles the ball during Game Two of the 2023 NBA Finals against the Denver Nuggets on June 4, 2023 at the Ball Arena in Denver, Colorado.

The Basics:

Series: Tied 1-1
Time: 8:30 p.m. ET ABC
Venue: Kaseya Center — Miami, FL
Heat vs. Nuggets spread: Nuggets -2.5
Heat vs. Nuggets over/under: 214.5 points
Heat vs. Nuggets Moneyline: Nuggets -145, Heat +122

Stats and Storylines:

Denver Nuggets:

  • The Nuggets are 23-25 against the spread in road games
  • Nikola Jokic scored 41 points in Game 2, the most points by a center in an NBA Finals game since 2001.
  • Jokic is averaging 30.4 points, 12.9 rebounds, and 10.1 assists per game in the postseason, becoming the first player in NBA history to average a triple-double through 17 postseason games.
  • Jokic has already produced the most triple-doubles in a single playoff run than anyone in NBA history. 
  • The Nuggets are 3-8 when Jokic has six or less assists. 

Miami Heat:

  • The Heat are 21-28-2 against the spread in home games
  • The Heat have ten wins as the betting underdog in the playoffs, the most of any team in the NBA over the last 30 postseasons. 
  • Miami also has seven comeback wins when facing at least a 12-point deficit, more than any team in a single postseason in the play-by-play era. 
  • The Heat have been outscored by 24 pts over the 1st three-quarters of this postseason but are +90 in the 4th quarter (that’s the third-best margin of all-time).


In Game 2, the Heat trailed 83-75 entering the 4th quarter. Miami now has 4 wins when trailing by 8+ pts entering the 4th this postseason. That’s the most in a single postseason in NBA history. Miami is 4-5 in those situations. The rest of the NBA is 1-41 this postseason. Predicting the Miami Heat is harder for me than picking an item on the appetizer menu is for my girlfriend- it is almost impossible.

Luckily, Denver is easier to pinpoint. The Nuggets are 3-8 when Jokic has six or fewer assists, 7-14 when he has eight or fewer assists and 41-7 in all other games. When the Heat guard Jokic in the post, his ability to swing the ball from beyond the arc is glorious. How glorious? Denver has scored 2.22 points per possession where Jokic touched the ball in the post this postseason. Meaning opponents would be better off letting him dunk the ball with no defense. That’s how dangerous Jokic is in the post. But there’s another side to that coin. Sure, Jokic’s 41-point performance in Game 2 was remarkable to watch, but the Nuggets only win when he acts as a facilitator. The Nuggets are 0-3 in games where Jokic scores 40 or more points.

Your choice comes down to this. Jokic, or Erik Spoelstra. A once-in-a-generation player or a once-in-a-generation coach? Spoelstra has brought Miami this far, so it’s hard not to see them winning at home. However, when their role players aren’t knocking down contested shots, the Heat are a very bad offensive team.

Best Bet:

Under 214.5 points. Miami’s shooters have been streaky at times, and Jimmy Butler is clearly tired.

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