Trail Blazers vs. Heat NBA expert prediction and odds for Friday, March 29 (Back the Underdog Blazers)

NBA betting preview, prediction and best bet for Trail Blazers-Heat. 
Mar 27, 2024; Atlanta, Georgia, USA;Portland Trail Blazers guard Dalano Banton (5) celebrates after a basket against the Hawks.
Mar 27, 2024; Atlanta, Georgia, USA;Portland Trail Blazers guard Dalano Banton (5) celebrates after a basket against the Hawks. / Jordan Godfree-USA TODAY Sports

Portland is in familiar territory Friday night as a double-digit underdog against the Miami Heat. Portland has all eyes on the draft moving forward and has lost eight consecutive games following Wednesday’s 14-point road loss to Atlanta. The Trail Blazers are in the middle of a seven-game road trip. 

Miami, just one game out of the No. 6 seed in the Eastern Conference, is trying to play its way out of the NBA Play-In Tournament. A team that has struggled at home this season, the Heat are trying to bounce back after Tuesday’s 113-92 loss to Golden State, its second loss in the first three games of their home stand. Here’s the betting preview of the cross-conference tilt with a best bet. 

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Trail Blazers vs. Heat odds, spread and total

Trail Blazers vs. Heat how to watch

  • Date: Friday, March 29 
  • Game time: 8 p.m. EST
  • Venue: Kaseya Center
  • How to watch (TV): Bally Sports
  • Trail Blazers record: 19-54
  • Heat record: 39-33

Trail Blazers vs. Heat injury report

Portland Trail Blazers

  • Jerami Grant (hamstring): doubtful
  • Malcolm Brogdon (elbow): out
  • Matisse Thybulle (ankle): questionable
  • Toumani Camara (rib): out
  • Deandre Ayton (elbow): questionable
  • Anfernee Simons (knee): out 

Miami Heat

  • Caleb Martin (ankle): probable
  • Jaime Jaquez Jr. (ankle): probable
  • Jimmy Butler (illness): probable
  • Kevin Love (heel/personal): probable
  • Duncan Robinson (back): out
  • Tyler Herro (foot): out 

Trail Blazers vs. Heat key players to watch

Portland Trail Blazers

Dalano Banton: The former second-round pick is taking advantage of Portland’s numerous injuries. Over the last two games, Banton has combined for 59 points on 24-of-44 shooting with seven 3-pointers. He had a double-double (28 points, 11 rebounds) in Monday’s loss to Houston and was one assist away from a double-double in Wednesday’s loss to the Hawks. 

Miami Heat

Bam Adebayo: One of the few healthy pieces for a playoff-hopeful Heat squad, Adebayo turned in three consecutive double-doubles before going for 24 points in Tuesday’s loss to Golden State. Adebayo is averaging 17.2 points and 11.3 rebounds a night in March. 

Trail Blazers vs. Heat prediction and pick

The injury report for both teams is daunting, though it looks a little better on the Miami side heading into the matchup. 

However, Miami’s puzzling home splits make them a difficult team to back as a double-digit favorite. The Heat are 27th in the NBA in scoring and are just 13-22 ATS (third-worst in the NBA) inside Kaseya Center this season. 

Miami’s prowess from downtown stands out (No. 13 in the NBA in 3-point shooting), but Portland’s defense is No. 5 against triples this season and the Heat’s top-two options from downtown (Herro and Robinson) are unavailable for Friday’s game. 

Miami is a double-digit favorite for just the fifth time this season. The Heat are 1-3 ATS in their previous four games in this spot and the inconsistent Miami offense doesn’t inspire confidence to pull away. In a game with a low total, the points just become too valuable to pass up on Portland in this spot. Take the underdog Trail Blazers. 

Game odds update periodically and are subject to change.