The Milwaukee Bucks are the top seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs, but the Boston Celtics might be the team to beat. Boston looked like the best team in the East on Sunday afternoon in Milwaukee, and they easily took Game 1 of the series. Milwaukee will have to regroup in a hurry after suffering a disappointing 112-90 defeat in the series opener.
Both the Celtics and Bucks dominated in the first round, as each team swept their opponent right out of the playoffs. Boston was able to knock off the tough Indiana Pacers in the first round, and the Milwaukee Bucks easily dispatched the Detroit Pistons. These two teams play a very different style, and the Celtics were able to set the tone in Game 1. Milwaukee is a -7.5 point favorite over Boston in Game 2.
“Greek Freak” Needs Help
The Boston Celtics are determined to slow down Giannis Antetokounmpo, and that plan worked in the series opener. Antetokounmpo still managed to score 22 points, but he went just 7-21 from the field in the loss. The “Greek Freak” has been an absolute monster all season long, but he is going to need plenty of help from his teammates. Milwaukee led the league with 118.1 points per game during the regular season, and they need a team effort.
Milwaukee shot just 15-24 from the free-throw line in the series opener, and their bench didn’t provide much scoring at all. Nikola Mirotic poured in 13 points, but he was the only reserve to score more than nine points. Khris Middleton had 16 points in support of Antetokounmpo, but the other three starters combined for just 12 points. Milwaukee has the potential to be a great offensive team, but they need to make some shots.
Celtics Are Making Shots
The Boston Celtics struggled to score during the regular season, but that hasn’t been the case so far in the postseason. Boston knocked down 42 percent of their three-point attempts in Game 1 of the series, and seven different players knocked down a three. The Celtics are giving up just 108 points per game this season, and their defense is normally their strength, but Boston’s shooting could be a weapon going forward.
Kyrie Irving led the Celtics with 26 points in Game 1 of the series and is averaging 23 points and 8 assists per night in the postseason. Veteran Al Horford will be a huge key for Boston in this series, and he poured in 20 points in the series opener. Boston should be a little worried about Jayson Tatum after another disappointing game for him on Sunday. Tatum scored just four points in the victory, and the Celtics need him to be great the rest of the way.
Bucks Bounce Back With Win
The Milwaukee Bucks simply did not look like themselves in the series opener, but they have plenty of time to bounce back. Milwaukee has been a tremendous offensive team all season long, and they are going to shoot it much better in Game 2. Look for the “Greek Freak” to have a monster night in helping his team even up the series at one win apiece. Bet the Milwaukee Bucks -7.5 over the Boston Celtics.