NBA Free Pick | Bucks at Nets

One Eastern Conference semi-final gets underway on Saturday when Milwaukee visits Brooklyn in Game 1. The Bucks swept Miami in the opening round while Brooklyn took five games to get rid of Boston.

The Bucks and Nets played three times during the regular season, but you can throw those games out when trying to forecast the postseason. Neither team was at full strength when they played in the regular season. Brooklyn’s Big Three will play together against Milwaukee for the first time this season in Game 1 on Saturday.


Game: Milwaukee Bucks (50-26, 35-41 ATS) at Brooklyn Nets (52-25, 42-35 ATS)

When: 7:30 PM ET, Saturday, June 5, 2021
Where: Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York
Current Line: BKN -4             Total: 239.5
TV Coverage: TNT

Three Musketeers

Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, and James Harden played a grand total of eight regular season games together before finally getting to play together in the playoffs. They averaged 85.2 points per game in the series with Boston setting an NBA record in the process.

The key matchup, of course, will be Durant against the Bucks two-time reigning MVP Giannis Antetonkounmpo. In the three regular season Bucks-Nets games, Brooklyn had no answer for Giannis. Remember, Durant played in all three of those games as Giannis averaged 39.7 points.

The Greek Freak was also outstanding in the sweep of the Heat averaging 23.5 points, 15.0 rebounds, and 7.8 assists per game. Four other teammates averaged at least 15 points a game in the opening series.

What we know about both teams is that they can score. They ended up No. 1 and 2 in scoring in the league at 120.0 and 118.9 points per game, respectively. Both teams have turned it up during the playoffs. Brooklyn is averaging 127.7 and Milwaukee 121.7 over their last three games.

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Greek Freak & Company

Overall, the Bucks have not trended well against the spread with a sub-.500 record for the season. However, they are 4-2 ATS in their last six games and 8-4 ATS in their last 12 games against the Nets.

Brooklyn has been one of the better teams to back this year. They finished 42-35 ATS and the Nets are 9-1 ATS in their last 10 games. Those covers include three double-digit spreads and three more of eight or more points.

Bucks at Nets Free Pick

While some of the spread numbers sound impressive, the real value is on the total. The game total is set at 239.5, which may not seem high given both team’s penchant for scoring. But, looking closer you’ll see that Milwaukee’s scoring average of 120 and Brooklyn’s average of 118.9 add up to 0.6 points fewer than the Game 1 total.

Last time we had a Grizzlies at Warriors betting preview, see what we said.

It’s worth noting that the Game 1 total is less than all three game totals – 240, 242.5, 242.5 – from the regular season. Looking at it from a defensive standpoint, the two teams combine to give up 227.3 per game. That’s over 12 points less than Saturday’s total.

While scoring is definitely on the rise in the NBA, it’s worth noting that the Under is a solid play in the postseason. Pace drops about 2.0 to 2.5 possessions during the playoffs and that has led to 132-112-4 Under record over the past three playoff seasons.

NBA Bucks at Nets Free Pick:  UNDER 239.5

Pick by Coach Rick