Milwaukee Bucks vs Detroit Pistons Preview
The Milwaukee Bucks have a slight lead over the Toronto Raptors for first place in the Eastern Conference. If they want to keep and possibly extend that lead, they’ll need a win tonight against the Detroit Pistons in a potential first-round playoff preview.
The Bucks are 35-13 on the season and have won eight of their last 10, but lost their most recent game. The Pistons are 21-27 on the season and are 4-6 in the in last 10. They have also lost their most recent game and 2.5 games behind the Charlotte Hornets for eighth in the Eastern Conference.
These teams last played on New Year’s Day wih the Bucks winning handily 121-98 behind Brook Lopez’ 25 points. They overcame a standout game from Blake Griffin, who finished with 29 points, nine rebounds and four assists.
Tonight’s marquee matchup will be between the frountcourts as Giannis Antetokounmpo and Brook Lopez face off against Andre Drummond and Blake Griffin.
Time: 7:00pm ET
Arena: Little Caesars Arena, Detroit, MU
Channel: FSWIS, FSD
Detroit Pistons Starting Lineup
|SF||Bruce Brown Jr.|
Andre Drummond returned to the Pistons’ lineup in their last game after a three-game absence due to a concussion. Drummond didn’t seem to miss a beat, as he finished Friday’s game with 23 points and 15 rebounds.
The Pistons as a whole though didn’t fare as well, losing 101-106 to the Dallas Mavericks. The had several offensive struggles in the second quarter, and if it were not for a rough quarter by both teams, the fourth quarter would have seemed like a late-game collapse as they scored just 16 points.
Drummond and Griffin have carried the Pistons, but their bench failed to deliver on Friday, and a close loss clearly does not equal a moral victory for head coach Dwayne Casey.
The Pistons have an even tougher assignment in the Bucks tonight, who have several offensive weapons, so limiting Giannis won’t completely shut down the Bucks offense.
Milwaukee Bucks Starting Lineup
Tonight’s game is the beginning of a five-game road trip for the Bucks and they’d love to start it off with a win. In their last game, they ran into Paul George and the Oklahoma City Thunder. George has been playing at an MVP level lately, and the Bucks allowed him to go off for 36 points, which nullified Giannis’ 27 point, 18 rebound effort.
The starters for Milwaukee came through as they have done most of the season. Like the Pistons, Milwaukee’s Bucks didn’t provide the offensive punch that was needed when the starters went to the bench. The second unit provided just 15 points, and veteran point guard George Hill has still not stepped into the role off the bench the Bucks likely hoped he would, although he has shown flashes here and there.
The latest news around the Bucks has been that big man Thon Maker is requesting a trade from the Bucks in search of more playing time elsewhere.
The Bucks will be looking to complete the season sweep of the Pistons tonight, and the chances have to be in their favor, considering they’ve gone 8-1 against division foes this season.
Detroit Pistons vs. Milwaukee Bucks Betting Odds
The Milwaukee Bucks are seven-point favorites to win tonight’s road game. The over/under is 218 points and the moneyline has seen very little movement as the Bucks are currently -280 after opening at -260.
Milwaukee is 26-10-12 ATS and 10-10-2 on the road. Detroit is 22-10-16 and 9-0-15 at home against the spread.
Overall, Milwaukee is 13-9 on the road and 29-11 as the favorite, while the Pistons are 13-11 at home, but just 8-22 as the underdog.
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