This Sunday, the (34-36) Toronto Raptors will travel to Milwaukee, WI to take on the (50-20) Milwaukee Bucks. Tipoff will be at 8:00 PM EST inside the Fiserv Forum. This will be the third meeting between these two teams this regular season, as the Bucks won the last battle, 130-122.
The Toronto Raptors are coming into this one after taking down the Oklahoma City Thunder, 128-111. They looked great on both ends of the floor, as they will have to stay hot in this one if they want to challenge the Bucks on the road.
The Milwaukee Bucks are entering this game after falling to the Indiana Pacers, 139-123. They were not good on the defensive end of the court, as they will have to apply more pressure if they want to pick up another win at home.
Yesterday's Best Bet cashed, as I am (37-19-1) in my last 57 Best Bets. Now, I've picked a side in the Michigan State vs. Marquette game, as I can't wait for this one to start! Pick up my Sunday CBB Best Bet and I will see you back in the GREEN!
This game was written/published before last night's results.
Can the Raptors Show Up on the Road?The Toronto Raptors are currently in ninth place in the Eastern Conference standings as they are 16 games back from the Bucks. They are also (5-5) in their last 10 and they've won two games straight. On offense, they are scoring 112.8 points per game and they have shot 45.6% from the floor. This is the 22nd most points scored per contest and the 26th-highest team shooting percentage. According to dunksandthrees.com, the Raptors have the 11th-highest adjusted offensive rating in the NBA. Pascal Siakam continues to lead the way on the offensive end of the court, as he is scoring 24.2 points per game on 47.2% shooting from the floor. Toronto has also shown that they are more successful when they are attacking the basket. They have only shot 33.9% from behind the arc, which is the 27th-highest three-point shooting percentage in the NBA. The Raptors have also shot 78.2% at the charity stripe, which is the 18th-highest free-throw percentage in the league.
On the defensive end of the court, the Raptors are allowing 112.1 points per game and they have allowed their opponents to shoot 49.2% from the floor. This is the sixth least amount of points surrendered per game, but the 28th-highest shooting percentage allowed. According to dunksandthrees.com, the Raptors have the 16th-lowest adjusted defensive efficiency rating. The Toronto Raptors have continued to leave shooters open, as they have struggled to defend on the perimeter as well. They are allowing their opponents to shoot 37.7% from behind the arc, which is the second-highest three-point shooting percentage allowed. The Raptors are also snatching 42.9 rebounds per game, which is the 18th most.
Injury Report: Dalano Banton SF (Thumb) and Christian Koloko C (Nose) are questionable. Otto Porter Jr. SF (Toe) is out.
Will the Bucks Stay HOT?The Milwaukee Bucks are currently in first place in the Eastern Conference standings, as they have a 1.5-game lead over the Boston Celtics. The Bucks are also (7-3) in their last 10 games played. On offense, they are scoring 116.2 points per game and they have shot 46.9% from the floor. This is the ninth most points scored per game, but only the 20th-highest team shooting percentage. According to dunksandthrees.com, the Bucks have the 11th-highest adjusted offensive rating in the NBA. Giannis Antetokounmpo continues to lead the way on the offensive end of the court, as he is scoring 31.4 points per game on 54.2% shooting from the field. The Bucks have also shown that they can efficiently score anywhere on the floor. They are shooting 36.6% from deep, which is the 11th-highest three-point shooting percentage in the league. Milwaukee has struggled at the charity stripe, though. They have only made 74.3% of their shots at the line, which is the second-lowest free-throw shooting percentage in the NBA.
On the defensive end of the court, the Bucks are holding their opponents to 112.4 points per game and they have forced their opponents to shoot 45.2% from the floor. This is the ninth least amount of points surrendered per game and the second-lowest shooting percentage allowed. According to dunksandthrees.com, the Bucks have the third-lowest adjusted defensive rating in the NBA. They have continued to contest shots in the paint, but their perimeter defense has also been tough to beat. They are forcing their opponents to shoot 34.9% from deep, which is the fifth-lowest three-point shooting percentage allowed. The Bucks are also averaging 48.9 rebounds per game, which is the most in the league.
Injury Report: Brook Lopez C (Ankle), Grayson Allen SG (Foot), Jae Crowder SF (Calf), Goran Dragic PG (Knee), and Thanasis Antetokounmpo SF (Personal) are questionable.
Best Bets for this Game
Full-Game Side Bet
I will be taking the Toronto Raptors on the road and I am going to take the points (+9.5). The Bucks have multiple players listed as questionable on their injury report, as I believe they are too banged up to blow out the Raptors in this game. Toronto also likes to slow these games down and limit the number of shots that their opponents take throughout the game. That will happen in this one and the Bucks won't score enough points to cover this spread. Milwaukee has also struggled on the offensive end of the court at different times this season, as I see them having trouble efficiently scoring if Lopez, Allen, or Crowder can't play. The Raptors will lock in on Giannis and do everything they can to keep this game close. The Raptors are also playing solid basketball right now, as they have picked up back-to-back wins before coming into this one. They will carry that momentum over into this game and score enough points to cover this spread on the road.
Pick the Toronto Raptors and take the points (+9.5).
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Full-Game Total Pick
I will be hammering the under in this matchup, as I don't see either of these teams scoring enough points to push this total over the number. According to dunksandthrees.com, the Raptors have the 25th lowest adjusted tempo rating in the NBA, as they will slow this game down and limit the number of shots that each team takes from the floor. This will keep the total under the number, as neither team will take enough shots to push this total over the number. I also see the Raptors having a tough time consistently scoring throughout this game. They are only averaging the 22nd most points per game and the Bucks have been legit defensively. According to dunksandthrees.com, the Bucks have the third-lowest adjusted defensive rating and they are holding their opponents to the ninth least amount of points per game. Milwaukee will make it very difficult for the Raptors to consistently score, which will keep this total under the number.
Pick the under and expect a defensive battle in this one.