The Boston Celtics aren’t often underdogs, but that’s the case against the Milwaukee Bucks on Thursday.
It’s a Boston vs Milwaukee Eastern Conference battle for supremacy after the Celtics won the first meeting at home in November.
We expect another tight contest between the leading teams in the NBA standings.
Celtics Finding Reserves
The Celtics almost lost their unbeaten home record to the Timberwolves on Wednesday. However, a late fourth quarter flurry and an overtime blowout got the job done.
It won’t be easy to follow that effort on the road against the Bucks, who have had more rest. However, doubt the Celtics are your peril.
They’re a fantastic team, which is why they’re favorites with NBA odds to win the championship. However, they’re not favorites to win against the Bucks.
A value line of +5.5 is available for Jayson Tatum and his men, who have a positive against the spread record, and it could be improved.
The Celtics haven’t started many games as an underdog, so it’s a new position for them. They haven’t shown any suggestion of slowing down at 29-8, and they have played much better than the Bucks so far.
We expect money to come for the Celtics on game night, as bettors gear up for a huge Boston vs Milwaukee Eastern Conference battle at Fiserv Forum.
Bucks Needing Answers
The Bucks have lost four of their last five games, and their only recent win came against a terrible San Antonio Spurs outfit.
It’s still a great record at this stage of the year, but losing to Houston and Utah to prepare for this game won’t give the -5.5 favorites any confidence.
We were particularly worried by their 132-116 loss to Utah. It came at home, and allowing a team like Utah to score 132 points isn’t good enough.
“You’ve got to stay together, that’s it,” Antetokounmpo said. “If you try to go your way or do it yourself, it’s not going to work. We’ve been in this position before. It’s OK to be in this position … but then again, at the end of the day, we have to get better. We have to realize that we have keep on doing the little things.”
They now face one of the best offenses in the NBA, so it could be a high scoring contest if the Bucks don’t sort out their defense.
The sportsbook has the total at 241, so despite the Bucks being firm favorites, bookmakers don’t believe the Bucks’ defense will show up.
Celtics to Reign Supreme
We can’t turn down the value odds for the Celtics, and we thought it would be a closer contest at the sportsbook.
They are the better team, and although the Bucks have lost only four home games, one of those came in their most recent game.
We priced the Celtics around +2.5, so we’re lapping up the value line and riding the Celtics in this Boston vs Milwaukee Eastern Conference battle.
We’re also including over 241. The Celtics and Bucks can turn on the defensive pressure when they want, but they also possess some of the best offensive players in the NBA.
Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Antetokounmpo, and Lillard could all have big games, which should see the total go over the mark.