Miami Heat Winning Streak Ends, Team Buckles Down for Playoffs

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From February 3 to March 27, the Miami Heat did not lose a single game. Over their 27-game winning streak, the second-most in the history of the NBA, the Heat showed why they’re the overwhelming favorite to win both the Eastern Conference and the NBA Championship. However, all good things must come to an end, and on Wednesday, March 27, the Heat finally lost to a ferocious Chicago Bulls squad 101-97 in Chi Town.

The Heat were six point favorites in the game, but Chicago came into the game with a massive chip on their shoulders and got all best basketball odds at their side. The Bulls’ Taj Gibson and Kirk Hinrich repeatedly hard-fouled LeBron James, disrupting the flow of Miami’s offense and forcing them to play at a slower pace. However, after the game, the Heat reflected on the streak and basked in their accomplishment.

“We understand, probably more so later on in our careers, the significance of that. And then that was it,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. “We took that moment to acknowledge it, to acknowledge each other, that experience, but it was never about the streak. We have a bigger goal, but also right now, it’s about ‘Are we getting better?’ ”

However, despite the titanic achievement of a 27-game winning streak, the Heat know that the true goal lies ahead. In fact, as the streak wound to a close, coach Spoelstra vocalized some concerns about his teams’ few shortcomings, noting that because of the streak the Heat weren’t working to improve.

Now that the streak is over, however, the Heat are shifting into full playoff push mode, with LeBron James, Dwayne Wade, Chris Bosh and other key players hitting the bench and resting for entire games. With only a handful of games left in the season, there’s no sense in jeopardizing the health of the Heat’s best players.

From a gambling perspective, it would be wise not to wager on the Heat’s remaining regular season games as it’s tough to predict who will be playing and who won’t. However, if the Heat release that information ahead of time, as they did on Tuesday, April 2 when they announced that James, Wade and Mario Chalmers would not be playing against the Knicks, then it might actually be a good idea to bet on the other team.

But come playoff time, there’s no better bet in the NBA than to wager on the Heat winning their conference and the championship.