In what could be an Eastern Conference Finals preview, if you’ve got the brass ones to wager on this contest, good for you.
As the Boston Celtics and Milwaukee Bucks hit the hardwood for their first full-speed contest since early spring, expect high-scoring and back-and-forth action that will make it one of the most anticipated NBA Bubble games in the first full day of games on Friday, July 31st.
Pace On Pace on Pace
According to prognosticators from some of the bigger publications out there, this is going to be a run-of-the-mill exhibition with nothing to play for. Apparently, this is someone that has never competed at an elite level before, or if he has, he should know better than to doubt the motivation for players in historically wild circumstances.
Let’s face it, all of these teams in the bubble, not just the really good ones like Boston and Milwaukee, are excited to get back to betting basketball. While we would argue in most contests during the restart that it’s a little dangerous to wager on overs, the fact that teams have a little bit of bad blood and bitterness means we really like this play on the over thanks to the ultra-high pace both of these teams tend to play at.
The total is currently set at 218.5 points, and we really love this line. It tells us that the bookmakers are shading it high as a bit of risk mitigation, and in actuality, I think the line should be in the low 220s.
Boston is a middle-of-the-pack team in terms of pace, but when you key in on Milwaukee, they run circles around the competition with the second-most possessions per game thus far in the season.
We really like the Bucks to crank up the volume here and rattle off a minimum of 110 to 115 points, and if the Celtics can match them possession for possession, we’ll easily cruise into the 220s.
To counter the ultra-fast pace of the Bucks, the Celtics may try and slow things down, but such a strategy can only work for so long. The Celtics will have to match fire for fire against the Bucks, and if Milwaukee is able to force turnovers and get into transition, it’s going to be a very long night for the Celtics.
Based on this, we really like the over in this spot.
On a short line of 4.5 points and only the second night of action in the NBA’s bubble (but first night for both of these teams), there is going to be a lot of pride on the line for everyone involved. As underdogs, albeit short ones, the Celtics would love to make a statement and make the Bucks earn every bucket.
Giannis Antetokounmpo is a freak of nature, but Kemba Walker, undersized or not, is an absolute scoring machine. I see bucket-for-bucket action from start to finish, but as possessions slow down in the latter minutes and moments, one-on-one scoring is crucial.
Being able to break people down off the ball is critical, and I like the Celtics to pull away with this one as the slugfest slows down to a war of attrition. I can see this coming down to a last possession.
I like the Celtics to win, 123-119.
So take the over, points, and sprinkle a little on the moneyline for the Celtics.