Almost Nobody Listened To Charles Barkley Before Celtics-Heat Game 5

Ninety-two percent (!) of moneyline tickets were on Miami as of Thursday morning


May 25

NBA analyst Charles Barkley sat at Kaseya Center on Tuesday after the Celtics earned a series-extending victory against the Heat and said there was no chance Miami would go into Boston and win Game 5 at TD Garden.

Barkley referred to it as a “cakewalk” for the Green, and joked how he would put everything he could on Boston to take care of business on its parquet floor.

Well, just about nobody listened to Barkley when they went to the betting window and placed wagers on Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals, which is set for Thursday night.

BetMGM revealed Thursday morning an overwhelming majority of moneyline bets and spread tickets were on the Heat. At the time, 92% of moneyline tickets were on Miami, which accounted for 65% of the moneyline handle. The fact 8% of tickets represented 35% of the handle does indicate there were some larger wagers on the Celtics, however.

It’s a similar situation as it relates to the spread. Miami opened as a 7.5-point road underdog and that number moved to 8.5, according to consensus data on Eighty-three percent of spread wagers were on the Heat to cover, which represented 75% of the spread handle.

The Over also is a popular bet among the public, despite the number moving from 214.5 to 215.5 at BetMGM. Nevertheless, 84% of the handle and 81% of tickets were on the Over.

For what it’s worth, Heat coach Erik Spoelstra shared how the group couldn’t care less about being the underdog. And for good reason. After all, the Celtics were the betting favorite three others times the series — Games 1, 2, and 3 — and Miami won all three straight up.

Tipoff is scheduled for 8:30 p.m. ET.

Thumbnail photo via Sam Navarro/USA TODAY Sports Images

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