Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#1537 Milwaukee Bucks vs.
#1538 Orlando Magic
Sunday, April 11, 2021 at 7:05pm EDT
Amway Center, Orlando
Written by Nick Raffoul

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The Milwaukee Bucks will head on the road to the Amway Center on Sunday afternoon as they get set for an Eastern Conference clash versus the rebuilding Orlando Magic.

Milwaukee currently sits in third place in the Eastern Conference standings with a 32-20 overall record through 52 games. With 20 games remaining on the regular-season schedule, the Bucks remain 3.5-games back of the Philadelphia 76ers and Brooklyn Nets for the No. 1 seed in the East. Meanwhile, Orlando is contending for one of the league’s worst records. The Magic currently sport the fourth-worst record in the NBA but are just 1.5-games behind the Detroit Pistons for a coveted bottom-three record.

Can the Magic upend the Bucks at home on Sunday night?

Bucks looking to finish regular season strong

Milwaukee was missing all five of its starters in a 127-119 loss at home against the Charlotte Hornets on Friday night. Rookie Jordan Nwora finished with a team-high 24 points on 4-of-10 shooting from 3-point range while Jeff Teague added 19 points and six assists in the loss. The Bucks haven’t played at home since March 27, which could be part of the reason that head coach Mike Budenholtzer opted to give his entire starting lineup the night off.

The Bucks will open up a three-game road trip on the road in Orlando on Sunday but the team still has one roster spot left open ahead of its postseason run. Milwaukee was reportedly interested in signing guard Austin Rivers but that hasn’t come to fruition just yet. It will be interesting to see if the Bucks decide to fill that roster spot soon, as they play their final 20 games in a span of just 36 days.

According to dunksandthrees.com, the Bucks rank fifth in the NBA with an adjusted net rating of +4.8. Milwaukee owns the league’s sixth-best offense with an adjusted offensive rating of 116.2, but it has slipped defensively, ranking 11th in the league with an adjusted defensive rating of 111.5.

Bamba continues to flash potential for tanking Magic

Orlando suffered its fourth consecutive loss on Friday night, falling short at home 111-106 versus the Indiana Pacers. Terrence Ross scored a team-high 24 points while Mo Bamba added 14 points and three blocks off of the bench in the loss.

Bamba has been a revelation for the Magic since joining Steve Clifford’s rotation off of the bench. The former No. 6 overall pick was stuck behind former centers Nikola Vucevic and Khem Birch, but has finally been given the opportunity to flash his potential over the last few weeks. In his last eight games, Bamba is averaging a healthy 11.4 points, 5.5 rebounds, and 1.3 blocks per game in just 18.1 minutes of action per night. He has shot a healthy 42.3 percent from beyond the arc during that span and has now made multiple 3-pointers in three straight games.

According to dunksandthrees.com, the Magic have been one of the NBA’s worst teams on both ends of the floor. Orlando owns an adjusted net rating of -7.1 and sits 28th in the league with an adjusted offensive rating of 105.6. Clifford has his team locked in defensively though, as they come in allowing just 112.7 points per 100 possessions on defense, good for 22nd in the NBA.

Best Bets for this Game

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With the Bucks laying just 8.5 points on the road, it’s hard not to like Milwaukee’s chances of covering the spread in this spot. While Steve Clifford has done his best to keep Orlando competitive in recent weeks, the talent discrepancy is going to start to show with a bigger sample size. Not to mention, the Magic have little incentive to win over the final 20 games, as they could improve their odds of landing the No. 1 overall pick and staying in the top four with a few more losses. Take the Bucks to cover the number on the road in this Eastern Conference battle on Sunday evening.

Prediction: Milwaukee Bucks -8.5

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The Magic have been speeding up the pace since letting go of Nikola Vucevic was traded to the Bulls. They now rank 19th in the league in pace and 23rd in average possession length on offense. Meanwhile, the Bucks are third in the NBA in both categories and sport the sixth-best offensive in the league, so this should turn into a fast-paced game. Orlando has given up at least 110 points in each of its last five games. Take the over in this Eastern Conference clash on Sunday afternoon.

Prediction: Over 222.5
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Written By Nick Raffoul , "Nick Raffoul"

Shortly after graduating with an Honors in Business Administration, Nick turned his attention from traditional stocks and bonds to investing in the performance of sports teams. And has now joined our team here at Winners & Whiners. Nick uses a combination of advanced stats and historical data to create sports investment models to identify value and generate consistent profits. Let Nick win for you.