Heat vs. Nuggets odds, prediction, time: 2023 NBA Finals picks

Ball Arena hosts the 2023 NBA Finals on Thursday night. The Denver Nuggets host the Miami Heat in Game 1 of a best-of-seven series for the title.

After obtaining the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference, Denver is 12-3 in playoffs and swept the Los Angeles Lakers in the Western Conference finals. Miami, the No. 8 seed in the East, defeated the Boston Celtics in seven games to reach the championship round.

Denver tipoff is 8:30 p.m. ET. The Heat vs. Nuggets odds at Caesars Sportsbook have Denver as an 8.5-point home favorite and a 219 over/under

Before making any Nuggets vs. Heat selections, check SportsLine's powerful computer model's NBA playoff predictions and betting recommendations.

Over the last four seasons, the SportsLine Projection Model has simulated every NBA game 10,000 times and made $100 players over $10,000 on its best NBA choices. 

 The model is 72-38 on top-rated NBA choices this season, returning over $2,900. Its followers made big profits.

Miami's defense might be an X-factor. The Heat have scored over 1.16 points per possession in the 2023 NBA playoffs, but Bam Adebayo and Jimmy Butler lead the defense. 

In Game 7 of the Eastern Conference finals, the Heat limited the Celtics to a season-low 84 points. Miami has allowed 111.5 points per 100 possessions in the playoffs. Miami is averaging 7.4 thefts and 19.3 points off turnovers in the playoffs. 

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