The top two teams in the Eastern Conference square off on Tuesday when the Toronto Raptors (50-19) and the Milwaukee Bucks (55-15) battle inside the NBA’s bubble at the Walt Disney World Sports Complex in Orlando, Fla.
The Bucks have clinched the No. 1 seed while the Raptors win on Sunday locked up the No. 2 seed. Gametime is set for 6:30 pm EST and will be televised on ESPN. Oddsmakers peg the Bucks as a -5.5 favorite in the contest.
What to Know – Toronto Raptors
Last season the Raptors knocked off the Bucks four times in seven days during the 2019 playoffs. This year Toronto is looking for their first victory over Milwaukee as the teams meet for the third time this season. Toronto is 4-1 since the league restarted and are looking for back-to-back wins in as many days after a 108-99 point victory over the Memphis Grizzlies on Sunday.
Six Raptors scored in double figures in Sunday’s victory, paced by Pascal Siakam with 26 points. Serge Ibaka came off the bench to score 12 points and grab 12 rebounds over 25 minutes of action.
Toronto allows a league-best 106.3 points per game on defense. That number has even been slightly better since the league restart, averaging just 103 points. The Raptors will need that defense when facing the league’s top offense.
In the two previous meetings against Milwaukee this season, the Bucks were triumphant at home, 115-105, and won in Toronto, 108-97.
Toronto closes out the regular season with matchups against the Philadelphia 76ers on Wednesday and Denver Nuggets on Friday.
What to Know – Milwaukee Bucks
Since starting up again, Milwaukee has looked shaky, going just 2-3 in Orlando, including 1-3 over their last four contests. The Bucks dropped a high-scoring affair against the Dallas Mavericks on Saturday, 136-132, in overtime.
The Bucks could be without the team’s leading scorer and rebounder, Giannis Antetokounmpo (29.8 PPG, 13.7 RPG), who is listed as probable for the matchup against the Raptors with a toothache. Antetokounmpo has averaged 31.0 ppg in Orlando.
Milwaukee boasts the top offense in the league averaging 118.9 ppg. That has not slowed down since the restart, with the Bucks averaging 122.6 ppg over the five games played in the bubble.
Milwaukee’s final two contests will be against the slumping Washington Wizards on Tuesday and Grizzlies on Thursday.
The Pick is In
Both of these teams have little to play for, with both spots locked in for the playoffs. This contest will serve as playoff preparation for both teams looking to correct any issues or work out any fixes before their playoff run.
The Raptors have yet to beat the Bucks this season, and a win against the top seed would be a big confidence booster heading into the postseason. We aren’t sure if they will win, but we like the Raptors +5.5 to keep it close.