The top two teams in the East meet for the third and last time this regular season, as the Boston Celtics pay the Milwaukee Bucks a visit this Friday. Boston won the first meeting in December in Beantown, 139-118, while Milwaukee won the next one in Brew City last February, 131-125. Who gets to win it this time?
Catch this game live on Friday, March 31, at 7:30 AM, Manila time
Away: Boston Celtics (52-24/24-15 Away)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Marcus Smart
- SG: Jaylen Brown
- SF: Jayson Tatum
- PF: Grant Williams (day-to-day)
- C: Al Horford
A trip to DC did not go as fruitful as the Celtics would have wanted it to be, as they saw suffered a 130-111 road loss to the Washington Wizards last Sunday. It’s the first loss for Boston in four games, and it’s worth remembering that the Celtics have won their last three games that came after a defeat.
The Celtics’ usually stout defense let Washington shoot 54.5%, which was the first time in 16 games that Boston let a team shoot better than 50 FG%. Expect the Celtics to play tighter this time around after the lesson the Wizards just taught them, and that’s even though Boston is facing the high-powered attack of Milwaukee. For one, the Bucks are playing in the second set of a back-to-back, so they will come into this game with a little bit of tiredness in their legs. The Celtics also do seem to always cover when they’re in Milwaukee, going 18-7-1 ATS in their last 26 visits there.
Home: Milwaukee Bucks (55-21/30-7 Home)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Jrue Holiday
- SG: Grayson Allen
- SF: Khris Middleton (questionable)
- PF: Giannis Antetokounmpo
- C: Brook Lopez
At their best, the Bucks are nearly unstoppable and unsolvable. Thursday night, Milwaukee flashed its might in a 149-136 win against the Indiana Pacers at home. Jrue Holiday set a new franchise record for the oldest Buck to score at least 50 points, as he unloaded 51 points in the win. Meanwhile, Giannis Antetkounmpo stitched together a triple-double of 38 points, 17 rebounds, and 12 assists in just 32 minutes.
The Bucks shot 62.4 FG% versus Indiana, and who’s to say they can’t be just as good this Friday against Boston? There’s even a chance that Khris Middleton will be active after missing the Pacers game. He was initially labeled questionable before getting ruled out of Thursday’s game perhaps to preserve his body for this marquee matchup against Boston. The Bucks have averaged 131.0 points on 52.4 FG% and 35.2 3FG% in their last five outings. If you’re worried about Milwaukee’s form after playing the night before, just consider the fact that they are 10-2 ATS in their last 12 games on zero days of rest.
Spread: The Bucks (-2.5) cover the spread.
Over/Under: The total (236.5) hits the Under.