The Milwaukee Bucks will take on the Brooklyn Nets in a fascinating matchup that sadly won’t feature Kyrie Irving. While the point guard is back into the lineup, he can’t play in New York, which will be played there. Either way, let’s see how they match up.
Milwaukee Bucks Betting Preview:
The defending champions are a very good team, and despite a slow start, they still have one of the best records in the League. The Nets have a better record, but for the Bucks, it’s important that they have weathered the initial storm and survived recent bouts with Covid. They have a 6-4 record in the past 10 games and are playing rather well. It’s far from ideal, but it does not need to be. Milwaukee enjoyed the home advantage in the playoffs last season, and they will want to secure that number one seed again. Games like these against direct contenders are important, so they will certainly look to win the game. Milwaukee is a pretty good offensive team as they rank 4th overall, but some of those numbers are a bit inflated recently as they played some bad teams such as Orlando (twice).
They are still quite efficient, especially when in full strength, as Giannis draws defenses on himself, allowing a lot of space for shooters. On defense, they can be elite as well, yet they haven’t really been this season. A lot of players have been in and out of the lineups, such as Giannis and Middleton, and that has obviously impacted them. A slow start did not help either, and P.J. Tucker is another defensive piece that is not there anymore. All in all, Milwaukee is a great team, and it’s trending upward.
Brooklyn Nets Betting Preview:
When it comes to the Nets, it’s a very similar situation to the Bucks. They have a slightly better record, but they had all the same issues the Bucks had. It’s a bit of a slow start, bouts with Covid that they have successfully weathered. The whole Kyrie thing got resolved, kind of, with him back in the lineup and playing but only at road games. Durant is playing out of his mind this year, with Harden slowly picking up the pace as well. He is still not in great shape and carrying extra weight, but maybe that’s just maybe the new Harden. The team is playing rather well and beating teams regularly, but they certainly have another level to unlock. If they can, and if Kyrie gets vaccinated and starts playing regularly, they will be tough to beat.
They rank as an average defensive team which is actually worse than for the majority of the season. They were actually a fringe top 10 defense, but after playing with basically 20 % of their rosters for several games, that number got worse. On offense, it’s been a bit better, but that number also went down over the past couple of weeks. Ultimately they can be a top 5 offense and top 10 defense when everything is going well.
Durant – Giannis
This was one hell of a matchup last year in the playoffs, and it will be in this match as well. Both are set to play, and both will go at each other. It’s hard to give either player a clear edge because both are super talented and play a different style. I think the Bucks can defend Durant better as a team than the Nets can Giannis, and that might end up being key.
Bucks vs. Nets betting lines
So the Brooklyn Nets are favored by 5 in this one because they have several players out. When it comes to the points, it’s set at 229, which is interesting, but I would stay away.
Free Betting Pick
Giannis is a game-time decision, but he is expected to play. Jrue is already ruled out, so things are not looking very good for the Bucks. They dropped the last two, and I think they are also dropping this one. Brooklyn is looking good, and I think they have an edge with the current roster situations. Can they cover the 5,5 hard to say, but you can find value in the money line as well.
When it comes to the points, I could definitely see the over at 229, considering that Milwaukee has good defenders out. I would personally stay away but if you trust it, go for it.