Atlanta Hawks vs. Milwaukee Bucks Preview (11/14/22): Prediction, Starting Lineups, Odds

The Atlanta Hawks travel to face the Milwaukee Bucks for the third time this season. Milwaukee prevailed 123-115 on October 29th, while Atlanta retaliated 117-98 on November 7th. Unfortunately for the Bucks, they will not be at full strength. Jrue Holiday, Khris Middleton, and Joe Ingles are out. On the other hand, the sole injured player for Atlanta is Bogdan Bogdanovic.

Can the shorthanded Bucks defend home-court? Odds, predictions, key matchups, and starting lineups are below.

Atlanta Hawks vs. Milwaukee Bucks Betting Odds

Milwaukee is favored by 4 points despite their injuries, which is a testament to Giannis’ greatness. Their moneyline can be found at -174. Meanwhile, Atlanta’s moneyline resides at +150, which means they must win 41% of the time to be profitable long-term. The over under is settling at 225.5 total points; they are combining for 227.1 PPG so far this season.

Atlanta Hawks vs. Milwaukee Bucks Prediction

I’m not confident on the spread for either side, but I am inclined to take under 225.5 points here. The second game between them would have hit the under for this line because Atlanta’s defense neutralized the Bucks. The first game between them would have hit the over, but it was in large part because Holiday scored 34 points and dished out 12 assists. The Bucks lack Jrue for this matchup, so shot-creation outside of Giannis will be limited. Even with Antetokounmpo’s 31.8 PPG on a 54.2 FG%, Milwaukee still ranks 23rd in Offensive Rating. Their half-court offense has been abysmal, and they rank 19th in 3PT% at a mediocre 34.5%.

Atlanta’s radically improved defense (12th Defensive Rating) can neutralize Milwaukee’s key pieces outside of Giannis. Capela is a capable rim protector who matches Lopez’ size, while Dejounte Murray will roam like a free safety and patch any deficient area. De’Andre Hunter and John Collins have improved defensively, so they are solid obstacles to throw at Giannis. Milwaukee brings Portis and Ibaka off the bench, but Atlanta can counter with the defensive-oriented Okongwu. Overall, given Milwaukee’s injuries and Atlanta’s solid defense, I expect the Bucks to score about 105 points here.

Therefore, can the Hawks be limited to a maximum of 120 points? Although the offense hasn’t been efficient, the Bucks easily rank 1st in Defensive Rating and own an exceptional half-court defense. They rotate rapidly and snuff out any catch and shoot opportunities, which is the source of them allowing the fewest corner threes. Atlanta is 27th in 3PT%, so they are unlikely to convert the few open looks they do receive. While Jrue Holiday’s absence hurts the defense, Jevon Carter is an excellent replacement who wreaks havoc on defense.

Milwaukee also neutralizes shots around the rim. The Bucks rank 3rd in opponent FG% in the restricted area because Lopez and Giannis excel as shot blockers. Trae and Dejounte will struggle to drive into the paint as a result.

Overall, Milwaukee’s dominant defense and struggling offense indicate the under as the correct choice. Atlanta’s defense can also limit most of the Bucks, so Milwaukee’s offense does not have an optimistic outlook.

Betting Trends

  • Bucks are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 home games
  • Under is 18-6 in Bucks last 24 overall
  • Over is 8-3 in Hawks last 11 overall
  • Hawks are 0-4 ATS in the last 4 meetings in Milwaukee

Key Matchups

Which team will win the positional matchups? Check out below for these vital battles.

Jevon Carter vs. Trae Young

Trae Young’s production has an immense impact on the result of the over under, so Carter’s defense is key here. The Bucks guard is holding opponents to a 42.6 FG% and 33.6 3PT% because he anticipates extremely well and quickly closes ground to contest shots. He’s not the desired prototype, but Carter remains a viable option to slow down Trae Young and force him into an inefficient night, which is not that uncommon.

Free Throws

A game with a large amount of free throws is far more likely to hit the over because of the massive expected points per possession. For example, a 70% free throw shooter will produce the same expected points per possession as a 46.7% three-point shooter. Milwaukee ranks 1st in opponent free throw rate, while Atlanta ranks 28th. The team trend that this matchup follows will have a large impact on the over under result. If it tilts towards Atlanta constantly fouling, then the Bucks may score enough for the over. However, if it tilts towards Milwaukee, then offense as a whole will decline.

Atlanta Hawks Starting Lineup

PG: Trae Young
SG: Dejounte Murray
SF: De’Andre Hunter
PF: John Collins
C: Clint Capela

Milwaukee Bucks Starting Lineups

PG: Jevon Carter
SG: Grayson Allen
SF: MarJon Beauchamp
PF: Giannis Antetokounmpo
C: Brook Lopez

Key Injuries

Atlanta Hawks Injuries: Bogdan Bogdanovic (O)

Milwaukee Bucks Injuries: Giannis Antetokounmpo (P), Jrue Holiday (O), Khris Middleton (O), Grayson Allen (P), Joe Ingles (O), Pat Connaughton (Q), MarJon Beauchamp (P), AJ Green (O)

Braxton has been covering the NBA for Lineups since the 2022 season. He's worked with multiple collegiate coaching staffs regarding analytics and scouting, which has allowed him to understand the game on a deeper level. Braxton is also a contributor at Thunderous Intentions.

Hot NBA Matchup Previews Stories