Heat vs Bucks Game 5 Odds, Picks, and Predictions: Miami Has the Right Temperature

The Heat are shockingly on the brink of advancing, and while the Bucks' defense should improve in a desperate spot, our NBA picks still think the books are underestimating Miami's attack.

Apr 26, 2023 • 19:53 ET • 4 min read
Jimmy Butler NBA
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports

They say that a wounded animal is the most dangerous and the Milwaukee Bucks are certainly wounded as they head back home on the verge of elimination against the Miami Heat.

After an incredible performance from Jimmy Butler led the Heat to an upset win in Game 4, Miami has a 3-1 series lead in this first-round Eastern Conference showdown.

Oddsmakers still think the Heat should fear the deer, with NBA odds opening with the Bucks as 11.5-point home favorites. Here are my best free Heat vs. Bucks NBA picks and predictions for Game 5 on Wednesday, April 26. 

Heat vs Bucks Game 5 best odds

Heat vs Bucks Game 5 picks and predictions

Heading into the All-Star break, the Bucks were second in the NBA in defensive rating by limiting foes to 109.6 points per 100 possessions. However, they struggled down the stretch and ranked 14th in defensive rating (114.1) after the break.

Those defensive issues have followed them into the playoffs, with the Heat scoring at least 119 points in every game this series. Miami also has an NBA-best 62.8 effective field goal percentage during the playoffs, so it hasn't been all Jimmy Butler even though he carried the team on Monday. 

Despite losing Tyler Herro and Victor Oladipo to injuries, Miami has been getting offensive production from others including Bam Adebayo (16.8 ppg), Caleb Martin (13.5 ppg on 64.3 FG%), and Duncan Robinson (12-16 shooting from beyond the arc over the last three games).

While the Bucks were better defensively in Game 4 with Giannis Antetokounmpo back in the lineup, this team total of 103.5 for Miami still looks too low.

My best bet: Heat team total Over 103.5 (-112 at FanDuel)

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Heat vs Bucks Game 5 spread analysis

Butler put together one of the greatest performances in NBA postseason history on Monday despite nursing a lower back injury. Jimmy Buckets scored 56 points on 19-28 shooting while turning the ball over just once to spearhead a fourth-quarter comeback. 

With that 119-114 victory, the Heat were able to push the No. 1 seeded Bucks to the brink of elimination. It was an extremely disappointing result for the Bucks, who finally had Giannis in the lineup after the two-time MVP missed Games 1 and 2 (and played just 11 minutes in Game 1) with a back injury of his own.

Giannis had 26 points, 10 boards, and 13 assists, but it wasn't enough to overcome Butler, who made up for the rest of the Heat going just 24-59 (40.7%) from the floor. 

The Bucks were 7.5-point road favorites for that contest and with this series shifting back to Milwaukee for Game 5 they are now 11.5-point chalk. Giannis averaged 31.1 points, 11.8 rebounds, and 5.7 assists per game during the regular season and the Bucks will be much better on both ends of the floor with him back in the lineup.

They also have plenty of talent around him with Jrue Holiday, Khris Middleton, and Brook Lopez all averaging over 18 ppg in the playoffs. 

Butler has been a man on a mission, but Adebayo needs to play better. The point guard platoon of Kyle Lowry and Gabe Vincent has worked out so far but is definitely a vulnerability waiting to be exploited. 

Heat vs Bucks Game 5 Over/Under analysis

Although the Heat played at an extremely slow pace during the regular season, this series has the third-fastest tempo out of every first-round matchup. Thanks to that uptick in tempo every game, this series has cashed the Over, which makes it six-straight meetings between these teams that have gone above the total.

The Heat have missed Herro's outside shooting and the knee injury suffered by Oladipo is another blow, but Butler has been carrying the offense. I already mentioned that Heat have been filling up the bucket this series, and with the exception of a 99-point dude in Game 3, so has Milwaukee.

The Bucks dropped 138 points without Giannis is Game 2 and when their All-NBA power forward returned on Monday they scored 114 points despite shooting just 43% from the floor. With so much on the line in an elimination game however, we could see the Bucks try to slow things down and tighten up defensively. 

Heat vs Bucks betting trend to know

The Over is 16-5 in Miami's last 21 games while going 23-11 in Milwaukee's previous 34 contests at home. Find more NBA betting trends for Heat vs. Bucks.

Heat vs Bucks Game 5 game info

Location: Fiserv Forum, Milwaukee, WI
Date: Wednesday, April 26, 2023
Tip-off: 9:30 p.m. ET

Heat vs Bucks Game 5 key injuries

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