Raptors vs Bucks Eastern Conference Finals Odds & Game 1 Preview.

Raptors vs Bucks Eastern Conference Finals Odds & Game 1 Preview

Written by on May 15, 2019

It’s a chalk Eastern Conference Final in the NBA on Wednesday night as the top-seeded Milwaukee Bucks welcome the No. 2 Toronto Raptors in Game 1. The Bucks are NBA Betting favorites for the game and the series at Mybookie Sportsbook.

How to Bet Raptors vs Bucks NBA Odds & TV Info

2019 NBA Playoffs Conference Finals Odds, Preview & Predictions

Season Series

The Bucks won three of four during the regular season vs. Toronto. They last played Jan. 31 in Toronto and the Bucks won 105-92. Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 19 points, and Khris Middleton had 18 as Milwaukee ended Toronto’s season-best home winning streak at 10 games. Milwaukee had not won the season series against Toronto since 2012-13. Pascal Siakam scored 28 points and Kawhi Leonard had 16 for the Raptors.

This is the second time the Raptors and Bucks have faced each other in the playoffs, with Toronto winning a 2017 first-round series 4-2.

Why Bet on Toronto?

The Raptors beat the Philadelphia 76ers in Game 7 on Sunday, 92-90 thanks to one of the most memorable buzzer-beating shots in league history by Kawhi Leonard. His shot bounced a couple of times, seemingly on the rim for minutes, before dropping through to start a wild celebration. Leonard finished with 41 points, eight boards, three assists, and three steals. Kawhi launched 39 shots, blowing past his previous career high (30).

Leonard’s 243 points in the conference semifinals were the third most in a series post-merger (since 1977): 260, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (1997 – LA Lakers); 246, Michael Jordan (1993 – Chicago Bulls). His buzzer-beating shot in Game 7 was the first game-winning field goal at the buzzer in a Game 7 in NBA playoffs history and set a personal and Raptors playoff record with 39 field-goal attempts. His 41 points in Game 7 also set the NBA record for the highest percentage of a team’s points in a Game 7 victory at 44.6%.

Leonard is averaging a playoff career-high 31.8 points through 12 games. Leonard has set the franchise record for most consecutive 20-point playoff games with nine, passing Vince Carter. He joins LeBron James (4X), Kevin Durant (3X), Kobe Bryant (3X), Allen Iverson (2X) and James Harden as the only players since 2000-01 to average at least 30.0 points through the first 10 playoff games.

The Raptors are the third team since 1955-56 to hold opponents under 100 points and .420 FG% eight times through the first 10 playoff games (Apr. 13 – May 7). The 1999-00 New York Knicks and 2011-12 Boston Celtics also accomplished this. Toronto became the first team since 2015 to hold opponents under 95.0 points and a .410 FG% through the first 10 playoff games.

Serge Ibaka came up huge on Sunday with 17 points, eight rebounds, three assists, and three 3-pointers in 29 minutes off the bench. Ibaka’s plus/minus rating of +22 was by far the highest of anyone on either team, and he helped justify coach Nick Nurse’s decision to stick with a tight seven-man rotation.

Kyle Lowry finished Sunday’s Game 7 victory with 10 points, six rebounds, six assists, two steals, and one 3-pointer in 39 minutes of action. Lowry sprained his left thumb early in the second quarter but he didn’t leave the game.

Team Stats

Offense
  • Total Score: 113.05
  • Field Goal Percentage: 47.13
  • Three-Point Percentage: 36.16
  • Free Throw Percentage: 80.60
  • Total Rebounds: 44.73

Defense

  • Total Score: 106.78
  • Field Goal Percentage: 44.47
  • Three-Point Percentage: 34.07
  • Free Throw Percentage: 76.88
  • Total Rebounds: 44.82

Why Bet on Milwaukee?

The Bucks have been off since finishing Boston in Game 5 last Wednesday, 116-91. Giannis Antetokounmpo had 20 points, eight rebounds, eight assists, two steals, and two blocks. The MVP candidate tweaked his left ankle in the third quarter, but he walked it off and continued to play without obvious discomfort.

Malcolm Brogdon (right foot) returned to action in Game 5 with 10 points, four assists, three rebounds, one block, and one 3-pointer in 17 minutes. Brogdon hadn’t played since tearing his plantar fascia in mid-March, forcing him to miss nearly eight weeks. His return bumped Sterling Brown (four minutes) from the rotation until garbage time.

Brogdon may not be ready to rejoin the starting lineup for Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals, according to coach Mike Budenholzer. That means Nikola Mirotic should continue to star.

Raptors vs Bucks Game 1 is going to be a battle.

“He needs more game minutes, more game action,” Budenholzer said of Brogdon. “We plan to continue to increase Malcolm’s workload and minutes. To say exactly how it’s going to play out — the next step will be him playing a little bit more in Game 1.”

Milwaukee has the most 20-point wins (five) through the first nine games of the playoffs in NBA history.

The Bucks are in the East Finals for the first time since 2001 and their eighth all-time conference final. The 2018-19 regular season was one of the best in franchise history for the Bucks. Not only did Milwaukee hit the 60-win mark for the first time since the 1980-81 season, but it finished atop the NBA for just the third time in franchise history and had two of the best home and road records in team history.

One place where the Bucks aren’t strong is in big-game experience. The Raptors’ roster has played a collective 116 games in the conference finals and beyond, and the Bucks have played in 24 such games — all of them by George Hill as a member of the San Antonio Spurs and Indiana Pacers.

Team Stats

Offense
  • Total Score: 118.00
  • Field Goal Percentage: 47.50
  • Three-Point Percentage: 35.26
  • Free Throw Percentage: 76.79
  • Total Rebounds: 49.97

Defense

  • Total Score: 108.49
  • Field Goal Percentage: 42.98
  • Three-Point Percentage: 35.67
  • Free Throw Percentage: 73.98
  • Total Rebounds: 45.32

Raptors vs Bucks Eastern Conference Finals Betting Trends

  • Over is 5-2 in the last 7 meetings
  • Road team is 7-1 ATS in the last 8 meetings
  • Underdog is 7-0 ATS in the last 7 meetings
  • Raptors are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games against Milwaukee
  • Raptors are 1-4 SU in their last 5 games against Milwaukee
  • The total has gone UNDER in 10 of Toronto’s last 13 games
  • Bucks are 8-1 ATS in their last 9 games
  • Bucks are 8-1 SU in their last 9 games
  • The total has gone OVER in 5 of Milwaukee’s last 7 games against Toronto

Expert Final Score Prediction for Raptors vs Bucks

Toronto Raptors 105 – Milwaukee Bucks 112