Miami Heat at Indiana Pacers (+2.5, 182.5)
The Indiana Pacers will put their 12-game home win streak to the test when they host the Miami Heat on Friday in a matchup of two of the top four teams in the Eastern Conference. The Pacers ran their home mark to 17-3 with a 98-79 win over Detroit on Wednesday, and they'll try to take down the Heat for the second time during their string of home victories that dates to Dec. 7.
The Heat have split the first two games of a four-game road trip. They rebounded from a double-overtime loss at Boston to blow out Brooklyn 105-85 on Wednesday and have won five of their last six to lay claim to the top spot in the Eastern Conference. It's the second of three meetings, with Indiana having won the first 87-77 at home Jan. 8.
TV: 7 p.m. ET, ESPN, Sun Sports (Miami), Fox Sports Indiana
CONSENSUS: 69 percent of Covers Consensus plays are on Miami while 63 percent are on the over.
ABOUT THE HEAT (29-13, 21-21-0 ATS): LeBron James is enjoying another MVP-caliber season, leading the team in scoring (26.5), rebounds (8.3) and assists (7.1) with support from the rest of the "Big Three" - Dwyane Wade (20.7 points, 4.6 assists) and Chris Bosh (17.2 points, 7.4 rebounds). That trio makes Miami a dominant offensive team, but the Heat has struggled at times at the defensive end and ranks last in the league in rebounding. In search of help on the boards, Miami signed forward Chris Andersen to a second 10-day contract on Wednesday and signed forward Jarvis Varnado for the remainder of the season.
ABOUT THE PACERS (27-19, 24-22-0 ATS): After a three-game losing streak in which its defense lapsed, Indiana returned to form against the Pistons. The Pacers lead the league in opponents' field-goal percentage (41.9) and rank second in points allowed per game (89.9). All-Star Paul George (17.4 points, 7.7 rebounds) leads the team in scoring, but the Pacers get good balance with David West (16.7 points, 7.7 rebounds), George Hill (14.6 points, 4.9 assists) and Roy Hibbert (10 points, 8.3 rebounds) also averaging double digits. Lance Stephenson recorded the first double-double of his career with 12 points and a career-high 11 rebounds against the Pistons before leaving the game with a sprained left ankle.
* Underdog is 27-13-1 ATS in the last 41 meetings.
* Heat are 1-6 ATS in their last seven vs. NBA Central.
* Pacers are 5-11 ATS in their last 16 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
* Over is 7-3 in Heat last 10 vs. NBA Central.
* Under is 19-6-1 in Pacers last 26 vs. Eastern Conference.
1. Miami has won nine games this season after trailing in the fourth quarter, including five in which it trailed by at least seven points in the final period.
2. The Pacers are 21-3 when holding opponents under 90 points and 22-3 when leading after three quarters.
3. James has scored in double figures in 461 consecutive games, including all 183 he has played for the Heat.