The Toronto Raptors will face the Milwaukee Bucks in a back-to-back fashion. We’re in Milwaukee to share our NBA odds series, make a Raptors-Bucks prediction and pick while showing you how to watch.
The Raptors are coming off a 122-107 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves. Significantly, the Raptors controlled the game throughout. Fred VanVleet led the way with 28 points and seven assists. Also, Pascal Siakam had 27 points and 10 rebounds. OG Anunoby added 15 points, while Jakob Poeltl had 14 points and 11 rebounds. Additionally, Gary Trent Jr. had 19 points off the bench. The Raptors shot 53.5% from the field and also won the battle of the boards 45-42.
The Bucks are coming off a 139-123 home loss to the Indiana Pacers. Initially, it looked like the Bucks were on their way to victory. But things fell apart in the third quarter as a poor defensive effort caused them to give up 40 points. Then they followed up with a bad fourth quarter to allow the Pacers to win. Giannis Antetokounmpo had 25 points and nine rebounds. Additionally, Jrue Holiday added 19 points, while Khris Middleton had 16 points but missed all five 3-pointers. Bobby Portis added 16 points. Finally, the Bucks shot 52.8% from the field but allowed the Pacers to shoot 55.7% from the field. The Bucks also shot 34.4% from triples and allowed the Pacers to shoot 47.8% from the 3-point line. Consequently, the Bucks turned the ball over 12 times.
The Raptors are 35-36 and are currently ninth in the Eastern Conference. Moreover, they are 5-5 in their last 10 games. The Raptors are 12-23 on the road. Meanwhile, the Bucks are 50-20 and currently the best team in the Eastern Conference. The Bucks are 7-3 in their last 10 games. Additionally, the Bucks are 28-7 at home.
The Bucks are 2-0 against the Raptors this season. They first beat the Raptors 104-101 in Toronto before beating them 130-122 in Milwaukee.
Here are the Raptors-Bucks NBA odds, courtesy of FanDuel
NBA Odds: Raptors-Bucks Odds
Toronto Raptors: +9 (-108)
Milwaukee dollars: -9 (-112)
Over: 234.5 (-110)
Minus: 234.5 (-110)
How to watch Raptors vs. Bucks
Television: NBA, BSW and SN
Time: 8:00 p.m. ET/5:00 p.m. PT
*Watch LIVE NBA games with fuboTV (click for free trial)*
Why the Raptors could cover the spread
The Raptors won a big game to stay in the play-in tournament. However, they must pass a Milwaukee team that catapulted them to the top of the standings. This is a potential playoff preview, and the Raptors could find themselves playing the Bucks in the first round if they can get past the play-in. In the end, they have to get there first.
Siamkam, VanVleet, Anunoby and Scottie Barnes are the cogs that keep the engine running. Also, Poeltl has been great since the Raptors traded him a few months ago. Poeltl is averaging 14.7 points and 9.6 rebounds in 15 games since returning to Toronto. Unfortunately, the Raptors are a very heavy team. The bench does not work well at all. Unfortunately, they’re only averaging 27.6 points per game. Toronto needs more production from its bench to have a chance.
The Raptors will cover the spread if they can stop Antetokounmpo. Then they must convert their shot attempts.
Why dollars could cover the spread
The Bucks are the best team in the Eastern Conference. Now they have to find a way to stay healthy and finish the home stretch with momentum. Antetokounmpo is obviously the king in Milwaukee, with 31.4 points and 11.9 rebounds per game. Significantly, he carried the Bucks through thick and thin and is one of the best players in the association. Antetokounmpo has help from Holiday, who is averaging 19.4 points per game. Meanwhile, Brook Lopez is averaging 15.5 points per game. Lopez did not play Indiana and will be tagged “dubious” entering today’s contest. Middleton is averaging 14.6 points per game and will be an integral key in today’s game. Finally, Bobby Portis is another option, with 13.8 points and 9.6 rebounds per game.
The Bucks need to improve their shooting, as they rank 19th in field goal percentage. Additionally, they are 11th in 3-point shooting percentage. The Bucks are also bad in the charity strip, ranking 29th in free throw shooting percentage. However, they are the best on the boards, ranking number one in rebounds. The Bucks are struggling to manage the rock, ranking 21st in turnovers. Finally, they are 10th in blocked shots.
The Bucks will cover the spread if Antetokounmpo can dominate on both sides. Then the team must defend the rim with him.
Raptors-Bucks final prediction and selection
The Raptors always play hard against the Bucks. Therefore, expect them to stay close, and the Bucks will have a hard time putting them away.
Raptors-Bucks final prediction and pick: Toronto Raptors: +9 (-108)