The NBA gets light on Sunday, as the league slows things down with just two afternoon games a day after a heavy 11-game onslaught. We made it through Saturday night alive with a solid 7-4 mark, lifting our season record to 402-206. We have a light lineup today, but that should give us a great shot at a nice 2-0 sweep. Let’s break down both games and see if we can’t help NBA bettors win some cash:

Miami Heat @ Boston Celtics

Miami has been struggling all year long and those struggles are going to be even more evident with Dwyane Wade and Luol Deng both sidelined with injuries. On the bright side, big man Hassan Whiteside has been a revelation and along with Chris Bosh, gives the Heat a pretty formidable front line. Miami can compete with anyone when they keep the offensive pace slow and buckle down on defense, but winning won’t come easy if they can’t get buckets. Without two of their best wing players, I think even winning in Boston could be tough. The Celtics don’t play much defense, but as they stand they might pack a slightly better offensive punch at the moment.

Pick: Celtics 102, Heat 97

Los Angeles Lakers @ New York Knicks

This game is a total crap shoot, as Kobe Bryant is done for the year and the bottom line is we never know what to expect out of either of these teams. Los Angeles likes to get shots up and raise the pace, while the Knicks prefer to keep things a little slower. Carmelo Anthony being active would obviously be huge for New York’s chances of pulling out a win for the fifth time in 11 tries (pretty unbelievable), but even if he hits the floor this should be anyone’s game given the lack of defense on either end. For now, it looks like he’ll be out there. I like this to be a good, competitive game if he’s there, but even with him the Knicks haven’t been great at getting wins. Jordan Clarkson and Wayne Ellington have stepped up in a big way for the Lakers and this is a nice matchup for them,¬†too, so add in Carlos Boozer, Jordan Hill and Jeremy Lin and I think L.A. ultimately should steal this one. If Melo is out, the Lakers could have it, easily.

Pick: Lakers 105, Knicks 103

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