The Milwaukee Bucks (1-0) are back at TD Garden Tuesday to take on the Boston Celtics (0-1) in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference semifinals. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m. ET (TNT). Below, we look at the Bucks vs. Celtics odds and lines, and make our expert NBA picks, predictions and bets.
Bucks superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo did everything to lead the charge in Game 1 with 24 points, 13 rebounds, 12 assists and 2 blocks. He kept his composure during his worst shooting night of the playoffs, just 9 of 25 (36%). PG Jrue Holiday led all scorers with 25 points and added 9 rebounds, 5 assists and 3 steals.
Boston laid an all-around egg in Game 1, shooting just 33.3% from the floor. They did drill 18 3-pointers, which was 10 fewer than their total makes on the night. PF Jayson Tatum had 21 points on 4 of 9 from distance, 6 rebounds and 6 assists.
Bucks vs. Celtics odds and lines
Odds provided by Tipico Sportsbook; access USA TODAY Sports Scores and Sports Betting Odds hub for a full list. Lines last updated at 9:39 a.m. ET.
- Money line: Bucks +155 (bet $100 to win $155) | Celtics -190 (bet $190 to win $100)
- Against the spread (ATS): Bucks +4.5 (-107) | Celtics -4.5 (-115)
- Over/Under (O/U): 215.5 (O: -108 | U: -112)
Bucks vs. Celtics key injuries
- G Khris Middleton (knee) out
- G Marcus Smart (quadriceps) questionable
Bucks vs. Celtics picks and predictions
Celtics 115, Bucks 112
The Celtics have to counterpunch to salvage one at home, but we’re not willing to throw -190 on it. PASS.
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Against the spread
Defensive Player of the Year G Marcus Smart took a couple of shots to his quadriceps, which has him questionable for this one. There’s little chance it will keep him out, but it could hinder his mobility. The Celtics had the best defense in the league largely due to Smart’s perimeter suffocation. The Celtics will also need to clean the boards better after Milwaukee had 4 players with 9 boards in Game 1.
Tatum takes this game over, but G Jaylen Brown has to support him better than 12 points on 4-of-13 shooting. The Bucks are just 1-7 ATS in the last 8 meetings with Boston, but I can’t see laying 4.5 points, and I can’t see Boston dropping both at home. Take the BUCKS +4.5 (-107). You might want to act quickly, though, as the spread figures to come down with 58% of the cash and tickets on Milwaukee this morning.
The Over is 8-2 in the last 10 with one of those Unders hitting in Game 1. In fact, this number would have hit in the last 9 aside from Game 1. Celtics C Al Horford has quietly shot 54.2% from 3-point range in the playoffs. Look for him to continue stretching the defense to open holes for Brown and Tatum to drive. Milwaukee blew Boston away in fast-break points at 28-8. That will be another emphasis when backup PG Derrick White enters the game.
The Bucks were a plus-23 when Giannis was on the floor for 38 minutes in Game 1. The Celtics will try to get him into foul trouble and exploit C Brook Lopez, who was a minus-10. Long story short, Boston will be much better offensively, so let’s LEAN OVER 215.5 (-108).
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