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Nuggets vs. Heat Prediction: Who Will Win the NBA Finals Rematch?

Written by: Grant Mitchell
Published March 13, 2024
10 min read

The Denver Nuggets (45-20) are 9-1 since the All-Star break and beat the Miami Heat (35-29) in a gentleman’s sweep in the NBA Finals a year ago, and now they’ll go on the road for a grudge match on Wednesday.

Denver has not been a great road team this season but has not lost away from home since before the All-Star break. They also appear to be playing their best basketball yet, which is a scary sight from a team that cruised through the playoffs a year ago.

The Heat recently fell to the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference following a three-game losing streak and are still waiting to turn up their game as they habitually do late in the year. They fell to Denver 103-97 at the end of February but have a chance for revenge at home.

Here, we will go over the betting odds and share our favorite pick for the Nuggets vs. Heat Finals rematch.

Nuggets vs Heat Prediction

Nuggets vs. Heat Betting Odds for Wednesday, March 13

The Nuggets are just 29-34-2 (46%) against the spread overall, the fifth-worst mark in the NBA. They’re also 9-13-1 ATS as a road favorite but covered in seven of 10 games since the All-Star break.

The Heat are 31-32-1 (49.2%) ATS and 1-6 (14.3%) ATS as a home underdog. They covered once in their last five games but also covered in nine straight just before that.

Teams Spread Moneyline Total
Denver Nuggets -4.5 (-105) -185 Over 215.5 (-110)
Miami Heat +4.5 (-115) +150 Under 215.5 (-110)

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Nuggets vs. Heat Prediction

Denver Nuggets Preview

The Nuggets are second to the Boston Celtics in odds to win the NBA Finals, and their recent performances are helping them close the gap.

Denver ranks higher in both offensive and defensive efficiency than it did during its championship-winning season a year ago. The continuity and versatility of the roster combined with the ascension of key bench players has allowed the team to form arguably the most complete rotation in basketball.

The team’s starting five has the second-best net rating of any regular five-man unit, behind only the Milwaukee Bucks’ starting lineup. Jokic, the MVP favorite, is at the center of that averaging 26.2 points, 12.3 rebounds, and 9.3 assists on 58.2% shooting.

The Nuggets rank in the top 10 in offensive and defensive rating, rebound rate, turnover percentage, assist-to-turnover ratio, and three-point percentage since the All-Star break. They also beat the Heat, Los Angeles Lakers, and Celtics, three teams they could see again in the playoffs.

Despite being 17-13 on the road, the Nuggets have a -0.7 scoring differential per 100 possessions on the road, a far cry from their mark of nearly +10 at home. However, they posted a +13.8 net rating in three road games since the All-Star break.

These teams will have familiarity with one another from their matchups in the Finals and a couple of weeks ago. The Nuggets are 7-1 against the Heat over the last two seasons, with the one loss coming 108-111 in Game 2 of the Finals. 

Miami Heat Preview

The Heat are still trying to find out exactly who they’re going to be in the playoffs.

They started the year uncharacteristically poor at defending against drives. They quickly shored that up but lost their touch from three-point land and also dealt with a variety of injuries that caused them to stagnate.

Following a seven-game losing streak at the end of January, they managed to rip off 11 wins in 14 games—however, they lost three straight since then in yet another twist in their topsy-turvy season.

Miami is 10th in net rating (+2.9) since the All-Star break. Both the offense and defense rank 12th in efficiency, while they struggled on the glass (24th in rebound rate). That said, they rank sixth in three-point percentage (39.9%) and have gotten more consistent scoring from Jimmy Butler (23.3 points, 6.3 assists, 5.8 rebounds since the All-Star Game).

One player worth keeping an eye on is Terry Rozier. The mid-season trade acquisition from the Charlotte Hornets has done his best to adapt to Miami’s system and has given them solid scoring and playmaking at times, though they’re roughly 10 points per 100 possessions worse when he is on the court than when he is off.

Looking back at Miami’s loss to Denver on Feb. 29, there are a couple of areas for improvement. For one, they need to create better looks from three-point territory, as they only made 26.9% of their 26 attempts (7.1 fewer than their season average).

They also allowed the Nuggets’ front line (Jokic, Aaron Gordon, and Michael Porter Jr.) to grab 30 rebounds. Porter Jr. also exploded for 30 points, while Jokic was able to sit back and pull the strings.

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Nuggets vs. Heat Betting Pick

Although Denver is much better at home than it is on the road, Miami is strangely better on the road than it is in the Kaseya Center. 

The Nuggets are red-hot and have reached a level of chemistry that is unattainable for most teams. And as great of a player as Bam Adebayo is, there’s nobody who can truly both Jokic.

It seems unlikely that the Nuggets lose this game, especially with something to prove. Whether or not they can cover is a different question, but we’re willing to lay the points with the defending champs. 

How to Watch Nuggets vs. Heat

  • When: Wednesday @ 7:30 p.m. ET

  • Where: Kaseya Center, Miami, FL

  • TV: ESPN

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AUTHOR

Grant Mitchell

480 Articles

Grant is a sports and sports betting journalist who prides himself on delivering breaking news and insightful analyses of the industry. Grant graduated from Virginia Tech in 2021 and is feverishly pursuing his ambitions in the sports betting field.

In his free time, Grant can be found passionately watching sports, doing a workout, or searching for adventure with his friends.

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