Detroit Pistons vs. Milwaukee Bucks Series Odds and Expert Betting Predictions
Odds to win series: Bucks -10,000, Pistons +1600
The NBA Playoffs resume at Fiserv Forum Sunday as the Milwaukee Bucks host the Detroit Pistons. This is a matchup of the Bucks best record in the playoffs (including the west) against the Pistons worst record. The city of Milwaukee is crazy about this team as this is the best Bucks squad to make the postseason since 1980. The Bucks swept the season series.
Facts about the Pistons
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Detroit's offense will not scare Milwaukee. The Pistons are 25th in points scored at 107 per game. However, their defense keeps games close, ranking seventh at 107 points allowed per game. They shoot 35 percent from downtown and rank 12th in defensive turnovers created at 13.6 percent.
Blake Griffin leads the way averaging 24.5 points, and Andre Drummond averages 15.6 rebounds a game. Reggie Jackson, Reggie Bullock and Wayne Ellington all chip in with 12 or more points per game.
The Pistons are 41-38-3 against the spread this year, and 38-43-1 regarding the total. The last 10 games between the two have seen each team 4-4-2 ATS, and 3-7 O/U.
The season series saw Detroit go 0-3-1 ATS vs. Milwaukee and 1-3 O/U.
Facts about the Bucks
Milwaukee has the association's best scoring offense at 118.1 points per game. They rank 11th in points allowed at 109.3 creating a +8.8 points differential.
What else can be said of Giannis Antetokounmpo? "The Greek Freak" is the frontrunner for MVP, according to many sportswriters who vote. His line of 27.7 points per game, 12.5 rebounds, 6 assists, and player efficiency rating of 30.95 are enough to make a case for one of the greatest NBA seasons in history. The supporting cast is fantastic, too, with Khris Middleton, Eric Bledsoe, and Brook Lopez all playing at least 28 minutes a game.
Over the last 10 games, they lead the NBA with 123 points scored. They are 47-31-4 ATS, 32-17-3 ATS against the Eastern Conference. They are very fickle with the total, going 41-41, and play to the under against the east at 24-28 O/U.
Blake Griffin is probable for Game 1. However, the Bucks have caught the injury bug. Pau Gasol, Tony Snell, Nikola Mirotic, and Malcom Brogdon are all out indefinitely. Mirotic and Brogdon's absence will be felt as they both average more than 10 points per game.
As I noted in a prior article, how do you win Coach of the Year and get fired the same season? I understand the Raptors imploded against the Cavs last year in the conference semifinals, but that was LeBron after all.
Casey has taken the Pistons to the playoffs despite an injury-riddled squad all year that lacks depth. He has worked wonders with Reggie Jackson, who is hitting 37 percent from downtown and has been more aggressive taking the rock to the paint and dishing out to open shooters.
Mike Budenholzer has just received the 2019 Michael H. Goldberg NBCA Coach of the Year Award. Well deserved. He led the Bucks to a 60-22 record, an improvement from 44-38 last season.
Budenholzer comes from the Gregg Popovich coaching tree, spending 18 seasons in San Antonio as a video coordinator and then an assistant coach. He went on to coach the Atlanta Hawks for five years thereafter, before getting the Bucks gig.
I think Mike is ready for the moment and ready to take this Bucks team to the NBA Finals. Not a lot of people know who he is, even with Milwaukee's success this year…and I think he plans on changing that.
Handicapping the series
The under looks very attractive in all these games. Both teams play to the under and will be defensive-minded as playoff basketball usually is. I think Giannis is ready to lay the hammer down on these guys, though. Especially with all Milwaukee's injuries, he will want to pick up the slack himself and send a message to the next team in waiting. I also think the Bucks really want to sweep the Pistons to try and rest up. Maybe look at the Bucks covering the spread, especially at home.
Bucks in 4. Giannis not messing around. Budenholzer not messing around. The Bucks know they have a real shot at winning the Eastern Conference, and they know to do that they should be routing the No. 8 seed, who is the worst team in the 2019 playoffs. Fear The Deer!
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