Miami Heat vs. Philadelphia 76ers 2022 Playoff Series Preview

The scene is set: The Miami Heat and Philadelphia 76ers will face off in the second round of the Eastern Conference playoffs. With each team disposing of their first-round opponents, the East heavyweights begin the series tonight in Miami with Game 1 tipping off at 7:30 p.m.

Need a TL;DR primer on all the action? We’ve got you covered with a quick CliffsNotes preview of the series.

Series Schedule

Times and TV are a bit up in the air, but as far as the dates of each game go, the NBA has released the series schedule.

Below is the Heat-76ers second-round schedule:

Game 1: Monday, May 2, at 7:30 p.m. in Miami (TNT)
Game 2: Wednesday, May 4, at 7:30 p.m. in Miami (TNT)
Game 3: Friday, May 6, at 7 p.m. in Philadelphia (ESPN)
Game 4: Sunday, May 8, in Philadelphia
Game 5 (if necessary): Tuesday, May 10, in Miami (TNT)
Game 6 (if necessary): Thursday, May 12, in Philadelphia (ESPN)
Game 7 (if necessary): Sunday, May 15, in Miami

Season Series Recap

The Sixers and Heat split their four regular-season contests, but there is one caveat when trying to take anything from those results — James Harden didn’t appear in any of those contests. Harden was ruled out for two March matchups against Miami with a “left hamstring injury management,” missing what would have resulted in games that were a much better preview of what’s to come beginning this week.

Will Harden’s presence make a difference against the Heat? Most definitely. Will that difference be a positive one? Anyone who has followed Harden’s poor play against the Miami Heat in the past would say it’s possible that won’t be the case.

The Heat thrives against teams that try to focus too much on their stars carrying the load. Ask Trae Young of the Atlanta Hawks about that.

Betting Odds

What does Las Vegas have to say about the Heat-Sixers matchup? As of the weekend, they have the Heat as clear favorites.

Below are the odds via Draft Kings:

Heat: -155
76ers: +135

Injury Concerns

If there is one storyline heading into the Heat-76ers series, it’s that both teams have injury concerns surrounding their biggest stars. For the 76ers, Joel Embiid is dealing with torn ligaments in his thumb that will require offseason surgery and an orbital fracture that reportedly will keep him out indefinitely. Torn ligaments in your thumb never sound fun, but it’s even less fun when your job requires shooting a basketball and banging against seven-footers. Broken orbitals sound like even less fun, regardless of your day job.

On Miami’s side, Jimmy Butler and Kyle Lowry are both recovering from injuries that kept the pair out of the final game against the Atlanta Hawks. Lowry is dealing with an injured hamstring, thought to be the more concerning of the two. Butler surprisingly missed Game 5 against the Hawks owing to knee inflammation.

As of this writing, Lowry has been ruled out of Game 1 against the 76ers. Embiid will miss the first two games but is hopeful to play in Game 3, when the series shifts to Philadephia.


Longtime Miami Heat fans will tell you it’s always Heat in 5, but some not as in-the-know continue to make predictions that aren’t correct. In this case, nearly every prediction this writer has seen gives the edge to Miami in six games.

Miami in six? That just doesn’t have the same ring. Sounds stressful, to be honest!

What’s the official Miami New Times prediction for Heat-Sixers? Heat in 5. It’s always Heat in 5. Pay attention! 

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