Milwaukee Bucks at Toronto Raptors Preview
The Milwaukee Bucks and Toronto Raptors have been jostling for the number one spot in the Eastern Conference all season. Tonight in Toronto, the results of the game could shake things up atop the East once again.
The Bucks currently have a slim half-game lead over the Raptors for first place. They enter tonight’s road game after winning their most recent game and eight of their last 10. Overall, they are 36-13 on the season. Toronto also comes in having won their last game. They have won seven of their last 10 and are 37-15 this season.
The last game of the season series was on January 5, with the Raptors winning 123-116 in a battle between Giannis Antetokounmpo and Kawhi Leonard. Giannis was a monster with 43 points and 18 rebounds. Leonard led the Raptors with 30 points.
Time: 8:00 p.m. ET
Arena: Scotiabank Arena, Toronto, ON
Milwaukee Bucks Starting Lineup
Aside from trying to hang onto first place in the East, the Bucks are also trying to win the regular season series with the Raptors in their final regular season matchup with Toronto. Aside from bragging rights, winning the season series would give them the tie-breaker at the end of the season, which could eventually give them home-court advantage throughout the playoffs.
In their last win, a 115-105 victory over the Detroit Pistons, Milwaukee played without guards Malcolm Brogdon and Sterling Brown. Aside from Giannis coming up big with a near triple-double, with 21 points, 11 assists and eight rebounds, the Bucks got some help from their reserve guard corps. of Pat Connaughton, George Hill and Tony Snell, who combined for 36 points.
Eric Bledsoe, who has played well all year, stepped up with his backcourt-mate Brogdon sidelined. Bledsoe finished with 20 points, seven assists, and five rebounds.
Brogdon and Brown are listed as probable for tonight’s game.
Toronto Raptors Starting Lineup
The Toronto Raptors have had to deal with injuries for a majority of the season, and they’ve also kept Kawhi Leonard out of several games for rest. The Raptors now seem to be getting back to full health, and center Jonas Valanciunas is expected to return early next month, which would give the Raptors one of the deeper rosters in the league.
The Raptors survived a 15-point third quarter against the Dallas Mavericks for a 123-120 win on Sunday night. Six Raptors players scored in double figures, and two others were one point away, which contributed to 38-point first and fourth quarters.
Kawhi Leonard finished with 33 points and 10 rebounds, and Kyle Lowry had 19 points, nine assists, and five rebounds.
The Raptors had trouble with Mavericks rookie Luka Doncic, who went off with a 35 point, 12 rebound and 10 assist triple-double. That’s not the best sign considering they have another potent triple-double threat coming to town in Giannis Antetokounmpo.
Toronto will be well-rested though, with three full days of rest between their games against the Mavericks and Bucks.
Bucks vs Raptors Betting Odds
The Raptors are 2.5 point favorites to win tonight’s game at home and get even closer to the top spot in the Eastern Conference. The over/under is 229 points. There has been very little movement on the moneyline, where the Raptors are -145 after opening at -135.
Against the spread, the Bucks are 27-10-12 and 11-10-2 on the road. Toronto is 22-16-14 and 12-0-13 at home.
Overall, the Raptors are 21-4 at home and 31-9 as the favorite. The Bucks have done well for themselves on the road with a 14-9 away record, and they are 6-2 as the underdog.
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