The Phoenix Suns and Milwaukee Bucks go from toe to toe; From pumping to pumping into Game 1 of the seven-game NBA Finals series, tonight begins at 9PM EST.
Only two points separated these teams over two regular games, leaving us all sitting through an incredible two weeks of closely contested NBA games—not to mention the difficulty of making the right calls in our favorite NBA sportsbooks.
Read on, as we try to understand the latest odds and give our hot tips for Game 1 of the NBA Finals: Bucks vs. Sunshine!
Future Hall-of-Famer Chris Paul is set to make his NBA Finals debut for the Suns who haven’t come that far since the glory days of Charles Barkley and Steve Nash. Paul & Co. He will have the opportunity to bring the championship back to Phoenix for the first time.
The Milwaukee Bucks have been threatening finals appearances for the past several years – Giannis Antetokounmpo has been great throughout the recent Bucks charge, but despite his best efforts the Milwaukee have kept going, so just to get to the top of the game it must be a great event. Relief for Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer.
Bucks fans are hoping “The Greek Freak” is in peak physical condition for this one – Giannis suffered knee hyperextension when he landed an embarrassingly low in Game 4 against the Atlanta Hawks in the Eastern Conference Finals. MVP 2x is expected to appear in the series, but the true extent of his injury is still under wraps for now. It’s 50/50 for match 1 this evening.
In the meantime, it’s Jrue Holiday versus Paul; The Bucks vs. the Suns – It’s the 2021 NBA Finals, and it’s live tonight!
Get rootbeer and join us as we run a comb through all of our vital betting stats.
Phoenix Suns vs Milwaukee Bucks review
Phoenix: The Suns returned to the kind of scoring we saw of them during the regular season in Game 5 and 6 against the Los Angeles Clippers in the Western Conference Finals.
Monty Williams’ men averaged 123 points per game – much more. In fact, in Game 6, Phoenix scored 56.6% field goals and 54.8% three-pointers, with Chris Paul (41 points) and Devin Booker (22 points) particularly as the Suns netted 4-2 winners. Paul and Booker were helped a great deal by an amazing performance on the edge from Deandre Ayton who scored 17 amazing rebounds!
During the regular season, the Suns squared off against the Bucks on two separate occasions, narrowly winning both times: 125-124 in Phoenix, and 127-128 in Milwaukee. Therefore, these two teams couldn’t be closer in terms of ability. But, getting into the Finals knowing you’ve outperformed your opponents twice already this year should be a real confidence booster for the Suns team in full force.
With a W/L record of 33-11 at the Phoenix Suns Arena during the regular season, the home ground advantage in the first two games is also expected to lift the Suns in the series.
Milwaukee: As for the Bucks, the brave and brave Atlanta Hawks persevered to seal their appearance in the Finals. But at what cost?
Giannis Antetokounmpo’s leg looked bent all the wrong ways in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Finals. Their Bucks grabbed to ward off the Hawks without a spell. But no team wants to go to the finals and miss their best player or suffer from a severe disability.
Fingers crossed – for the legitimacy of the series – that Giannis makes it and is capable of performing as we know he can.
In the absence of Antetokounmpo, the big performances came from Brook Lopez, who lost 33 points in Game 5, and Khris Middleton, who finally finished his third-quarter tally of 23 points for the brave Hawks in Game Six.
In that last game the Bucks raised their 3-point shooting percentage to 37.8% (17/45) but, compared to 54.8% of the Suns, well, they’re not likely to get stuck in a long-distance shootout, let’s put it that way. Bucks need to hit the paint and if Giannis doesn’t fit in, another big performance from Lopez will be needed. But to cast more doubt, D Jae Crowder has been unrealistic throughout qualifying and it could be a tough night for Holiday, Lopez and Co.
Add to that the fact that Milwaukee’s form away from the Fiserv Forum has been beaten or lost at 25-20 in the regular season and playoffs, and it’s easy to see why the odds makers have come into this season as a betting favorite.
Los Angeles Clippers vs. Phoenix Suns (Courtesy of Bovada)
With Giannis only at 50/50 in this opening game of the NBA Finals, it’s no surprise to see the odds-makers favor the Suns, who also boasted a home ground advantage in the first two games of the series.
Game 1: Phoenix Suns vs Milwaukee Bucks (money streak odds)
Phoenix Suns: -250; Milwaukee Bucks: +205
Game 1: Phoenix Suns vs Milwaukee Bucks (point distribution)
Phoenix Suns: -6 (-114); Milwaukee Bucks: +6 (-108)
Match 1: Phoenix Suns vs Milwaukee Bucks (Total Points)
Phoenix Suns: U219 (-109); Milwaukee Bucks: O219 (-112)
Predictions and Tips
If he rocks the Suns and starts shooting field goals and three-pointers at 55% as they did against the Clippers in Game 6 last week, we don’t think the Bucks will be able to hold out for them – especially not without Antetokounmpo (assuming he’s actually sitting outside that guy).
Usually, we preach taking the underdog just to maximize the value over the odds, especially in a historically tight series like the NBA Finals. But the Bureau agrees on this: The Bucks don’t travel well and they miss their spell. So, expect a rough night.
As such, we guarantee Phoenix on the money line at -250, and Bucks on the swing spread at +4 (+125) to try to get some value off the bets.