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Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 13:55 PM

Celtics at Bucks Preview

Celtics at Bucks – 8:05 PM EST

Betting Odds: Milwaukee -9 ½, Total 223 ½
Provided by DraftKings (IN, NJ & PA only)
Odds subject to change

In each of the last two seasons, Boston and Milwaukee have met up in the playoffs as both teams have knocked the other out once. Could there be a round three between these two Eastern Conference powers in April or even May?

The Bucks (36-6 SU, 24-18 ATS) own the best record in the NBA as Milwaukee has won nine of 10 games since losing at Philadelphia on Christmas Day. Milwaukee improved to 19-2 at Fiserv Forum in Tuesday’s 128-102 blowout of New York as hefty 16 ½-point favorites for its third win over the Knicks by at least 20 points this season. Giannis Antetokounmpo put together another solid performance as last season’s MVP scored 37 points on 12-of-17 shooting, including knocking down a trio of three-pointers.

The Celtics (27-12 SU, 22-15-2 ATS) travel to Milwaukee with no rest after getting surprised by Detroit at home on Wednesday, 116-103. Boston closed as 9 ½-point favorites and shot 49% from the floor, but the Pistons shot lights out by hitting 60% of their attempts from the field. The Celtics had covered their previous two games against the Pelicans and Bulls each as a favorite of 9 ½ points or more, but Boston has lost three games at TD Garden since a 13-1 home start.

When these teams hooked up in the second round of the playoffs last season, Boston dominated Milwaukee in Game 1 as eight-point underdogs, 112-90. However, the Celtics wouldn’t win again in that series as the Bucks captured four straight victories to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals.

In the first matchup this season on October 30 at TD Garden, the Celtics overcame a 16-point halftime deficit by outscoring the Bucks in the second half, 74-47 for a 116-105 triumph as 3 ½-point underdogs. Kemba Walker introduced himself to the rivalry by scoring 32 points to lead Boston, as the Celtics drilled 17 three-pointers.

The Bucks have taken advantage of unrested teams this season by posting an 8-0 SU and 7-1 ATS record against squads playing the second of a back-to-back set. Boston owns a 3-3 SU/ATS mark with no rest off Wednesday’s loss to Detroit, as the three losses have come to Philadelphia twice and Toronto.

Brad Stevens’ team has compiled a solid 6-2 ATS mark in the underdog role this season, the Celtics haven’t been an underdog of this size since being listed as a seven-point ‘dog in an overtime loss to the Clippers in November. The Bucks have put together a 12-3 ATS record since November 16 as a single-digit home favorite, including five straight covers at Fiserv Forum in this favorite range.

Betcha Didn’t Know

-- The Suns are on an 0-5 ATS skid the last five games. Phoenix visits New York as a 3 ½-point favorite.

-- The Jazz have won 10 straight games, but Utah has covered 11 of its past 12 games. The only ATS loss came to New Orleans, who the Jazz visit tonight as a 4 ½-point favorite.

-- The Nuggets are 4-2 SU with no rest this season, but own a 1-5 ATS mark on the second end of a back-to-back. Denver is listed as a 4 ½-point favorite at Golden State.

-- The Magic have covered five consecutive games after upsetting the Lakers last night. Orlando remains in Los Angeles to face the Clippers as 11-point underdogs.

You can reach Kevin Rogers via e-mail at [email protected]

Kevin Rogers can be followed on Twitter at virogers.

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