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Miami @ Utah
Current Records: Miami 18-18; Utah 19-19
The Utah Jazz haven’t won a game against the Miami Heat since Feb. 13 of last year, but they’ll be looking to end the drought Saturday. They will face off at 9 p.m. ET Dec. 31 at Vivint Arena without much rest after finishing up games yesterday. Allowing an average of 116.34 points per game, Utah has been asleep on the defensive side of the ball and will need to wake up before the matchup.
The Jazz were just a bucket short of a victory on Friday and fell 126-125 to the Sacramento Kings. Utah’s loss shouldn’t obscure the performances of small forward Lauri Markkanen, who had 36 points in addition to five rebounds, and point guard Jordan Clarkson, who had 25 points and nine assists.
Meanwhile, Miami was within striking distance but couldn’t close the gap on Friday as they fell 124-119 to the Denver Nuggets. A silver lining for Miami was the play of point guard Tyler Herro, who dropped a double-double on 26 points and ten boards along with five dimes.
Barring any buzzer beaters, Utah is expected to win a tight contest. But bettors beware: they are only 5-11 against the spread when favored.
The Jazz are now 19-19 while the Heat sit at 18-18. Utah is 8-10 after losses this season, Miami 9-8.
The Jazz are a 3-point favorite against the Heat, according to the latest NBA odds.
The oddsmakers were right in line with the betting community on this one, as the game opened as a 3-point spread, and stayed right there.
See NBA picks for every single game, including this one, from SportsLine’s advanced computer model. Get picks now.
Miami have won nine out of their last 14 games against Utah.
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