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Miami Heat vs. Boston Celtics Preview and Predictions 12-04-2019


The Boston Celtics are one of three Eastern Conference teams still unbeaten at home and they'll try to carry that trend through a home-heavy portion of the schedule beginning Wednesday against the Miami Heat. The Celtics, who are coming off a 1-1 trip to New York City, are 7-0 at TD Garden entering a stretch in which they play eight of 11 in Boston.

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They expect to begin the run without do-everything guard Marcus Smart, who is doubtful with an abdomen contusion suffered in Sunday's 113-104 win over the Knicks. "He's only going to play if he's a hundred percent, or close," coach Brad Stevens told reporters after Smart was unable to practice Tuesday. The Heat handed the Toronto Raptors their first home loss Tuesday night with a 121-110 victory in overtime. Jimmy Butler scored the first eight points in the extra session as part of his fifth career triple-double as Miami improved to 7-5 on the road.

TV: 7:30 p.m. ET, FS Sun (Miami), NBCS Boston

ABOUT THE HEAT (15-5): Butler finished with 22 points, a season-high 13 rebounds and 12 assists in the impressive win at Toronto. Duncan Robinson also had 22 points while making 6-of-9 3-pointers, improving to 14-of-22 from long distance over a three-game span. Kendrick Nunn is trending in the other direction, missing all nine of his 3-point attempts in the win over the Raptors to fall to 2-for-20 over the same three-game stretch.

ABOUT THE CELTICS (14-5): Jayson Tatum scored 30 points and Jaylen Brown added 28 in the contest at Madison Square Garden as Boston overcame Smart's scoreless 20 minutes and a 6-for-18 shooting effort by Kemba Walker. Their efforts also helped the Celtics get through some sluggishness that had them down nine points midway through the third quarter. "If there is one thing we're going to do it's to stay positive with each other," Walker told reporters of the strong finish. "We stuck with it. We stayed together. There's going to be more games like this. It's a long year."

BUZZER BEATERS

1. Celtics PG Brad Wanamaker is 12-for-19 from the field in a three-game stretch since missing all eight of his shots in a win over Sacramento on Nov. 25.

2. Heat PG Goran Dragic (groin) sat out Tuesday's game and already has been ruled out for the visit to Boston.

3. Miami won the first meeting last season before Boston took the next three.

Prediction

Free Daily Lock Pick: NBA: Dallas vs. Utah - January 25th - (100% Confidence Release)

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Stadium

TD Garden
Boston, Massachusetts, USA.
Capacity: 18,624

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Last Injuries

Boston Celtics

  • Jaylen Brown

    Ankle
    Ques Sun | questionable

    Brown has been held out of the previous two games with a right ankle sprain, and it is up in the air if he will face the Pelicans on Sunday.

  • Jayson Tatum

    Groin
    Ques Sun | questionable

    Tatum missed the previous game with a right groin strain, and it has yet to be established if he will suit up Sunday against the Pelicans.

  • Enes Kanter

    Hip
    Out Sun | out

    Kanter missed the last game with a right hip contusion, and will not draw back into the lineup Sunday against the Pelicans.

  • Kemba Walker

    Knee
    Prob Wed | probable

    Walker is suffering from left knee soreness but is expected to suit up for Wednesday's battle versus the Grizzlies.

  • Jaylen Brown

    Thumb
    Prob Mon | probable

    Brown has been held out of the previous two games due to a right thumb sprain, but he is expected to suit up for Monday's tilt versus the Lakers.

  • Kemba Walker

    Knee
    Prob Mon | probable

    Walker missed the previous contest due to left knee soreness, but it is likely he will be available for Monday's clash with the Lakers.

  • Robert Williams III

    Hip
    Late Feb | out

    Williams III has been diagnosed with a bone edema in his left hip. He is expected to be out of action though the All-Star break.

  • Marcus Smart

    Ankle
    Prob Sat | probable

    Smart is dealing with an ankle injury, but it is not expected to hinder his availability versus the Suns on Saturday.

Miami Heat

  • Goran Dragic

    Calf
    Ques Mon | questionable

    Dragic missed the last game with a sore left calf, and it is unclear if he will play Monday against the Magic.

  • Kendrick Nunn

    Achilles
    Ques Mon | questionable

    Nunn missed the last game due to a sore left Achilles, and it is uncertain if he will be active for Monday's contest against the Magic.

  • Jimmy Butler

    Ankle
    Ques Mon | questionable

    Butler exited the previous game with a sprained right ankle, and his status for Monday's clash with the Magic is unknown.

  • Jimmy Butler

    Knee
    Prob Fri | probable

    Butler has a sore right knee, but he will suit up against the Clippers on Friday.

  • Justise Winslow

    Back
    Early Feb | out

    Winslow is sidelined with a bone bruise in his lower back, and he is likely to be out until at least the start of February.

  • Derrick Jones Jr.

    Eye
    Prob Wed | probable

    Jones Jr. departed the last game after getting poked in both eyes. It is anticipated that he will play versus the Wizards on Wednesday.

  • Goran Dragic

    Knee
    Prob Wed | probable

    Dragic is projected to be in Wednesday's lineup versus the Wizards despite a right knee contusion.

  • Duncan Robinson

    Ankle
    Prob Wed | probable

    Robinson has a right ankle sprain, but it is anticipated that he will suit up against the Wizards on Wednesday.