Andre Iguodala Makes Heat Debut as Miami Getting 4.5 Points in Portland Against Trail Blazers


Damian Lillard driving to the hoop

Dame Lillard and the Blazers host the Miami Heat Sunday night. Photo from @SLAMonline (Twitter).

  • Heat travel to Portland looking for first win on West Coast trip
  • Blazers try to rebound after brutal missed call in loss to Jazz
  • Get the odds, our pick, and all the info you need to bet the game below

Still a long way from home and hit hard with the injury bug, the Miami Heat (34-17, 12-14 away) are hoping reinforcements from a trade deadline deal can help them snatch their first win midway through a six-game road trip in Portland.

They’ll be going against a Blazers team (24-29, 14-11 home) still seething after a brutal loss to the Jazz on Friday night. Tip-off at the Moda Center is scheduled for 9pm ET.

Miami Heat vs Portland Trail Blazers Odds

TeamSpreadMoneylineTotal at BetOnline
Miami Heat+4.5 (-110)+160Over 229.5 (-110)
Portland Trail Blazers-4.5 (-110)-180Under 229.5 (-110)

Odds from Feb 9

Getting the W is paramount for both teams, who are competing on each end of the playoff spectrum in their respective conferences. The Heat vs Trail Blazers odds gives a slight edge to the home side — let’s see how you should be wagering.

Miami Goes All-In, Adding Iggy

The East is as wide open as its been in over a decade, and Pat Riley pounced on the opportunity to make a run to win the conference, acquiring Andre Iguodala as the centerpiece of a deal that also delivers them Jae Crowder and Solomon Hill. They shipped out promising point-wing Justice Winslow, along with Dion Waiters and James Johnson.

It’s not a superstar haul, which is what Riley usually goes fishing for, but it adds another crop of solid, hard-nosed, above-average rotation players to a team that seems stocked on that shelf, which makes up for their lack of a top-tier superstar player to lead the way.

They can’t get here soon enough, as the Heat have stalled on their six-game west coast trip, dropping two straight and sinking to fourth in the East. They lost Jimmy Butler to a shoulder injury in their trip opener against the Clippers and he’ll miss his second straight game tonight. With Tyler Herro also out with a foot injury, Crowder and Hill are definitely plug-and-play pieces.

Iggy’s case is a little trickier, as the 36-year-old has not played on an NBA court since Game 6 of the NBA Finals on June 13. While reports indicate his physical status meets the Heat’s quality standard, the Miami may limit his minutes to try to ease him back into game action.

While his best offensive days are behind him, the hope is Iguodala can help Miami climb back into their usual top-10 perch in defensive rating (they’re currently 14th ), and take the tougher wing opponent assignments off Butler’s two-way load. He’ll also chip in all over the place as he’s done his entire career.

Miami was blown out 128-111 against the Clippers, while the 105-97 loss to Sacramento was a flattering score, as the Heat were widely outplayed most of the contest.

Blazers Burned in Salt Lake

Already playing with a depleted lineup, the Blazers lost Trevor Arizia to an ejection and Anfernee Simonds to a concussion against the Jazz. Still, with just seven players available, Portland hung tough behind another superhuman Damian Lillard performance.

Down two with seconds left, Lillard’s layup try was stopped by an obvious Rudy Gobert goal tend, which was not called and could not be challenged.

It was a bitter loss for the Blazers, who sit in ninth in the West, and need all the wins they can to chase down a playoff berth. Minus big men Jusuf Nurkic and Zach Collins, Portland has been patching together lineups and leaning on Lillard to carry them.

He’s done just about everything possible, pumping in 42.4 points over his last nine games, which includes splashing at least six triples in seven of those contests.

His nearly 30 point per game average has guided Portland to eighth in the NBA in scoring, but that hasn’t been the problem. Portland ranks a lowly 26th in defensive rating, and they’re giving up 115 points a game, which is fifth-worst in the association.

What’s the Best Bet?

The beauty of the Heat team is their depth, shaped around their all-around star in Butler to make the big shots in the clutch. Without him, the Heat revert to the hard-nosed opponent that will always scramble to get enough points to win.

Despite Miami’s three straight wins in this series, Portland is the more desperate team, and possesses the current best closer going in the NBA. While Miami has one of the best home marks in the NBA at 22-3, they’re just 12-14 on the road. Minus Butler, scoring and spacing will falter, and they’re going to struggle.

The pick: Trail Blazers ML (-180)

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Eric Rosales

NFL NBA Sports Writer & Editor


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